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Guard Accused of Organizing Prisoner “Sex Shows” at Tennessee Jail

By Chuck Sharman

A former jailer was fired and the sheriff is now being sued after two women detained at the Grainger County Jail complained they were forced to stage “sex shows” at the Tennessee lockup on more than 30 occasions over a two-month period beginning in February 2021.

According to the suit, the now-fired jail guard who orchestrated the abuse, Travis Hank Davis, allegedly ordered the women “to strip naked for him or perform various sex acts on each other while he watched and masturbated within the confines of the control room of the Grainger County Jail, (known as) the Bubble.”

They said the guard even stacked milk crates and climbed atop them to get a better view as he watched and pleasured himself.

Two detectives with the office of Sheriff James Harville began interviewing the victims in April 2021, after which one of the women—Chasity Bailey—was abruptly transferred to the Claiborne County Jail without explanation. Davis was fired on April 24, 2021, “for violating the Code of Ethics, for officer misconduct, and for abusing his position, among other reasons,” the lawsuit recalls. No charges have yet been filed against him.

Bailey and another of Davis’ alleged victims who filed the suit, Candace McGhee, said the jailer groomed them with favors that included “lighters for their cigarettes” before his sexual aggression grew to the point that he was using the intercom and loud-speaker system from the jail control room to order them “to describe their breasts and genitalia” and tell them “he pictured their faces instead of his wife’s when he and his wife were having sexual relations.”

McGhee was serving a 270-day sentence for a probation violation. Bailey was a pretrial detainee also accused of violating probation. They have asked the federal court for the Eastern District of Tennessee to certify their suit a class-action on behalf of them and all of Davis’ other alleged victims, each of whom seeks damages of at least $500,000 or a total of $15 million.

The women are represented by Knoxville attorneys Lance K. Baker and F. Clinton Little, as well as Matthew B. Evans of Evans & Beier LLP in Morristown. See: McGhee v. Grainger Cty., USDC (E.D.Tenn.), Case No. 2:22-cv-00038. 

Additional source: Tennessee Lookout

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Related legal case

McGhee v. Grainger Cty.