San Quentin State Prison Captain Orlando Ponce Arrested On Suspicion Of Inmate Sexual Assault

SAN QUINTIN, CALIFORNIA (August 18, 2023) – A captain at San Quentin State Prison identified as Orlando Ponce was arrested for allegedly sexually assaulting an unconscious person.

Marin County officials are saying that the victim came forward earlier this year in January. Orlando Ponce was arrested on Thursday and charged with one count of forcible penetration of an unconscious person.

Detectives said that they had probable cause for the arrest after the victim came forward. The attack allegedly took place in San Quentin Village, which is adjacent to the prison.

Orlando Ponce was initially booked into jail on a $100,000 bond. But jail records show that he is no longer in custody. The defendant has been with the state Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation since 2001.

He was promoted to captain on July 1, 2021. A full investigation remains ongoing at this time.


Liability For Sexual Assaults At San Quentin State Prison

Sexual abuse in jails in prisons is all to common. According to Human Rights Watch, “21 percent of the inmates had experienced at least one episode of pressured or forced sexual contact since being incarcerated, and at least 7 percent had been raped in their facility.” Women are much more likely to be the victims of sexual assault. There are many steps that prisons can take in order to prevent sexual abuse.

  • New inmates should be warned about the possibility of sexual abuse.
  • Correctional officers should be properly monitored. Officers should typically never be isolated with individual inmates.
  • All instances of suspected sexual misconduct in prison should be thoroughly investigated.
  • Jail officials should understand the factors that lead to sexual predation and victimization.

Inmates have a number of rights afforded to them under the constitution. In particular, the Eighth Amendment prohibits prisoners from being subjected to cruel and unusual forms of punishment. If a jail is grossly negligent in supervising a correctional officer who sexually assaults an inmate, this could form the basis of a constitutional claim. A jail may have had actual or constructive notice of a correctional officer’s past violations and failed to act. Victims of sexual abuse tend to suffer very serious injuries.

  • Sexual abuse can leave victims with long-term psychological trauma including anxiety and depression.
  • Sexual abuse victims are more likely to suffer from suicidal ideations.
  • Sexual abuse victims are at greater risk of chronic health conditions.

By the time a correctional officer is arrested for sexual abuse, it is rarely a surprise to their colleagues. There were likely dozens of red flags. But people refrain from speaking up out of fear of retaliation including potentially losing their job and livelihood. Any person that is sexually abused by law enforcement may be able to seek justice through a civil claim. A sexual abuse attorney can examine all of the unique facts of your case and let you know what your legal options are.

Getting Legal Help For Inmate Sexual Abuse At San Quentin State Prison

We at the Sehat Law Firm extend our best wishes to all of the people who may have been harmed by Orlando Ponce. There needs to be some accountability for what happened. What did his employer know and when did they know it?

Have you or someone that you care about been sexually abused while staying at San Quentin State Prison? You may be entitled to compensation. Our team of sexual abuse attorneys are here to help in any way that we can. We care deeply that abuse victims are aware of their rights and their abusers are held responsible. Whether you just have legal questions or are thinking about hiring an attorney we are here for you. You can reach out to us anytime at  (949) 825-5200.


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