Chesterton Tribune

 

 

Food service worker at Westville prison charged with sexual misconduct

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A Westville Correctional Facility (WCF) food service worker was arrested Sept. 7 on a charge of sexual misconduct by a service provider, the Indiana Department of Correction (DOC) said.

According to a statement released today, Sonya Belik, 29, of Michigan City, was working in the main kitchen at the facility on Saturday, Sept. 7, when another food service staffer reported seeing Belik engaged in inappropriate activity with one of the inmate kitchen workers.

A DOC police officer assigned to the facility investigated the allegation and, after conferring with the LaPorte County Prosecuting Attorney’s Office, determined there was sufficient evidence to arrest Belik. She was then transported to the LaPorte County Jail and booked on the charge, a Class C felony punishable by a term of two to eight years.

The incident is still under investigation by the facility’s Internal Affairs Department to determine if any charges or internal disciplinary action may be taken with the inmate allegedly involved.

Belik had been hired on Jan. 4, 2013, by Aramark Corporation following approval by the facility, DOC said. Aramark contractually provides food services to the Indiana Department of Correction. All contractual employees are subject to the same legal requirements as state correctional employees per federal law.

“Regardless of the employer,” Superintendent Mark Levenhagen said, “every staff person is responsible for following the law. While one employee was in violation, the other employee is to be commended for immediately reporting what she saw.”

“We do all we can to prevent staff from making bad decisions,” DOC Commissioner Bruce Lemmon said. “But when they do fail, we will hold them accountable to the public.”

 

 

Posted 9/19/2013