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Guard takes stand, denies sexually abusing inmate

February 6, 2019 GMT

SCRANTON, Pa. (AP) — A former prison guard has taken the stand in own defense and denied sexually abusing a female inmate at a Pennsylvania lockup.

The Times-Tribune of Scranton reports that George McHale testified Wednesday that he never met his accuser. McHale said “absolutely not” when his lawyer asked if he’d ever forced the woman to fondle him.

McHale is the first of seven former guards to head to trial on charges of sexually abusing female inmates at Lackawanna County Prison. They were charged last February after a grand jury found what it described as a culture of sexual coercion and cover-up at the jail in Scranton.

The jury is expected to get the case on Thursday.