PECOS, Texas (Big 2/Fox 24) – Another Class Action Lawsuit has been filed against the GEO Group. Investors filed the lawsuit against the for-profit prison operator due to their poor handling of COVID-19 in their facilities and misleading investors on their handling of outbreaks.
“Something needs to be done soon because COVID-19 is spreading really quickly and it is only a matter of time,” said Denisse Mata, an inmates wife at one of the Reeves County Detention Center that is owned by the GEO Group.
The 25-page class action complaint states that the GEO Group made “false and misleading statements regarding the company’s business, operational and compliance policies.”
The claim also states that they “specifically made false and/or misleading statements and failed to disclose that the geo group maintained woefully ineffective COVID-19 response procedures.”
“They run other private prisons and in all of them they have the same exact problem,” said Mata.
This particular lawsuit highlighting the GEO Group’s “inadequate procedures subjected residents of the company’s halfway houses at a significant health risk” in a Kansas based facility.
These complaints sounding eerily similar to those being made right here in West Texas, Dennise Mata said this is not an isolated case.
“The inmates that are showing the symptoms they are not being quarantined or they are not being placed into other units. They are all mixed up together,” she said.
The lawsuit stating that the GEO Group was vulnerable to significant financial and reputable harm and as a result lied in public statements when they said they were handling the COVID-19 outbreak and provided accurate care.
Mata said, “It just makes you feel frustrated and scared that every day you go to sleep and you wake up even scared to answer that phone call that probably your husband is going to be next or if he is feeling sick and it’s just hard.”
The GEO Grouptells us they filled to dismiss the lawsuit.This is just one lawsuit, however, there are 42 records of the geo group settling for employee-related offenses. They have had to pay $10M in penalties for 15 instances of misconduct and have 8 additional cases pending in litigation.
If you have a family member who has a complaint about conditions at a GEO Group facility, reach out to our reporter Feliz Romero at firstname.lastname@example.org or to our newsroom at email@example.com.
Here is a look at other stories about conditions at GEO Group Facilities around the country.