PREA in the News

Guard pleads guilty in sex case involving inmate

LAS VEGAS (AP) June 6, 2013 — A former Nevada corrections officer accused of having a sexual relationship with a convicted child killer serving time at a North Las Vegas prison has pleaded guilty to misconduct of a public officer.

Authorities say Eugenio Dimas, 52, entered the felony plea Wednesday in Las Vegas. As part of a plea agreement, prosecutors dropped a second charge of voluntary sexual contact between a prisoner and another person.

"Our office takes seriously any allegations of misconduct by public employees," Nevada Attorney General Catherine Cortez Masto said in a statement.

Officials said an inmate at the Florence McClure Women's Correctional Center tipped them off to Dimas' relationship with Monique Maestas, 26. The tipster warned a prison commander that a jealous Maestas might attack a third inmate who had allegedly been flirting with the guard.

According to the Las Vegas Review-Journal, officials found Dimas' cellphone number written on a Post-it note inside her prison cell, and confronted her about it.

She initially denied the accusations, but later admitted to having a sexual relationship with Dimas.

The corrections officer told state investigators there was no affair, but acknowledged giving Maestas a pendant of the Egyptian cross known as an ankh, along with pictures of him and his family and his cellphone number.

And according to court documents, "Officer Dimas was heard telling Maestas he loved her, missed her, would kiss her all over, made plans for the future and indicated they would be together."

Officials say Dimas was placed on leave in October, arrested in February and fired in April. Sentencing is set for Oct. 3.

Maestas is serving 47 years to life in prison for a 2003 carving knife attack that left 3-year-old Kristyanna Cowan dead and her sister paralyzed. Authorities say Maestas, then 16, joined her brother, then 19, in assaulting the sisters in Mesquite. Prosecutors say the crime was revenge against the girls' mother, who sold the Maestas siblings fake methamphetamine.

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© Educorr 2013