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Guard Admits Guilt, but Lawsuit Dismissed against Jail Supervisors

Guard Admits Guilt, but Lawsuit Dismissed against Jail Supervisors

by Derek Gilna

A civil rights complaint filed against officials at the Two Bridges Regional Jail in Wiscasset, Maine was dismissed by a federal court, even after a male guard admitted to improperly touching a female prisoner. The guard, Brian Bossie, a probationary employee who no longer works at the facility, pleaded guilty in April 2012 to sexually assaulting former prisoner Amanda Hayes.

Following Bossie’s plea, a charge of unlawful sexual touching was dropped and the assault charge was later dismissed as part of a deferred prosecution.

Hayes, 34, filed suit in 2013 under 28 U.S.C. § 1983, alleging that Bossie’s supervisors at the jail, Col. Mark Westrum and Lt. Richard Thompson, were aware of his unwanted advances towards Hayes and other female prisoners. According to the complaint, “Throughout the month of September 2011, Officer Bossie made several sexual comments and remarks to Ms. Hayes, ... requested that Ms. Hayes be naked when he did cell checks, ... [and these] sexual comments and remarks to Ms. Hayes were unwelcomed and unprovoked by Ms. Hayes and frightened her.”

The lawsuit, which sought damages against the jail and its supervisory staff, was originally filed in Lincoln County Superior Court and transferred to U.S. District Court. After the transfer, a settlement was reached between the parties wherein Hayes dismissed her claims against the jail, Westrum and Thompson.

Although the defendants argued they had been vindicated, the dismissal appeared to be more a recognition by Hayes’ attorneys that it would have been difficult to prove supervisory officials had knowledge of and failed to take corrective action regarding Bossie’s improper conduct.

Lead plaintiff’s attorney Hunter Tzovarras said that at the time the lawsuit was filed, “there was merit to the charge and allegations [against] the higher-ups. We agreed to settle but it doesn’t change the fact that Mr. Bossie pleaded guilty to the assault charge. I think all I can add about why [Ms. Hayes] agreed to settle the case is she felt rather than continue on with the litigation process, she agreed it’d be in her best interest to reach a settlement agreement now and obtain some closure with this incident.”

Under the settlement, Hayes did not receive any monetary compensation and was not required to pay the jail’s costs in the case. See: Hayes v. Two Bridges Regional Jail, U.S.D.C. (D. Maine), Case No. 2:13-cv-00288-NT.

Sources: Bangor Daily News,, www.lincolncounty­


Related legal case

Hayes v. Two Bridges Regional Jail