Ashely Diamond says, in a recent 11alive news segment, that she was raped and mistreated in a male jail cell in Georgia.
Diamond, 36, was serving time for burglary, theft by receiving, and escaping police custody in Floyd County. During that time, she said she was raped, ridiculed and tormented by inmates and staff at five different Georgia prisons, including Baldwin State Prison and Georgia State Prison.
“I really didn’t know what to expect,” Diamond told the local reporters in Atlanta. “As soon as I got there, I was immediately told to strip in front of other men. Of course, there were stares and hollers. It was one of the most humiliating moments of my life.”
According to Diamond, the assaults began immediately. She said she was “targeted right away.” “It was an every night thing,” She said of the attacks. “The staff turned a blind eye to it all. I think that the gangs run the prisons. I think that I was extorted and used.”
She was also denied hormonal therapy, which she had been taking for almost 20 years to enhance her feminine characteristics and suppress masculine features.
“My body began to morph, which was very painful. I literally thought I was going to die. I was very vocal from the beginning about needing my therapy.”
Since being released from prison, things have not been any easier for Diamond, who is currently living in Rome, Ga., the town she grew up in.
“Not everyone, in Rome, has warmly received me, but I definitely am fighting for a change in the prison system.”
Ashley Diamond's experience continues to bring to light the issues faced by transgender people, male or female identified, to be placed in a jail cell with those representing the opposite gender, is an act of violence against transgender individuals. A crime in itself, committed by law enforcement and others in charge of forcing the law. Every state has prisoner rights and this is in violation of those rights. Someone with the appearance and characteristics of a female, placed alone, behind bars, with men is inhuman and a human rights issue.
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