Kansas City Jailer Pleads Guilty After Admitting Having Sex With Female Inmate
Well at least it was a female inmate:
A Wyandotte County jailer admits to having sexual contact with an inmate at the county jail. Robert Saladrigas, 24, of Edwardsville, KS, pleaded guilty Wednesday to unlawful sexual relations. Saladrigas told a judge that he had sexual relations with a female inmate in the jail last month.
The crime, as written, indicates the inmate consented but in an environment that makes consent itself a bit of a gray area. Jailers don’t have the authority of law enforcement officers, but they have plenty of authority in the lives of those held in custody.
“He was the keeper of the key,” Lt. Kelli Bailiff, of the Wyandotte County Sheriff’s Office, said. Bailiff said this is why there is a law restricting relations between the controller and the controlled. “Those people are not in a prison. They have not been found guilty of a crime. They are being held there to go to court,” Bailiff said.
Saladrigas changed his plea to guilty just minutes after pleading not guilty to the crime of unlawful sexual relations.
“That’s not typical. In fact that is something that we totally weren’t prepared for,” Bailiff said. Equally atypical is the crime itself, with nothing remotely similar at any jail in the county since 1973.
The crime occurred behind the thick closed door of the woman’s cell on May 11. But the privacy that allowed for last month’s crime is a set-up that is there for plenty of good reasons, safety reasons, and there are no plans to change that.
“Actually in our old facility we had bars, but we had inmates throwing urine and feces and they would have what we call shanks, where they build knives and shaved down pencils and things, as they would stab at you as you would go by,” Bailiff said.
The crime Saladrigas pleaded guilty to is a level 5 felony on a scale of 1 to 10. He is still on unpaid leave because the guilty plea was so sudden and unexpected.