A federal correctional officer was found guilty of sexually abusing two women inmates at a low security prison in Dublin, California. The jury verdict came after a trial overseen by U.S. District Judge Yvonne Gonzalez Rogers.

The officer, John Bellhouse, 40, was charged with two counts of sexual abuse and three counts of abusive sexual contact for his conduct between December 2019 and December 2020.

He sexually assaulted one victim in the prison Safety Warehouse and Safety Office and touched another victim in the Safety Office at the prison camp.

Several officials from the Department of Justice, the FBI and the Office of the Inspector General condemned Bellhouse’s actions and praised the jury for holding him accountable.

They said Bellhouse betrayed his duty and violated the human rights of the victims. They also said they were committed to pursuing justice for victims of sexual abuse in federal prisons.

Bellhouse faces up to 15 years in prison for each count of sexual abuse and up to two years in prison for each count of abusive sexual contact. His sentencing hearing is scheduled for Aug. 30.

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