Woman who sexually assaulted two men at treatment center spared prison time, given 5 years of probation
A woman accused of sexually assaulting two male inmates living at a court-mandated treatment center, where she worked, was spared a prison term and instead was handed multiple years of probation. 26-year-old Rachele Johnson, from Michigan, admitted to having sex with two inmates living and has been registered as a sex offender.
According to the Lansing State Journal, Johnson was sentenced this past Tuesday to five years' probation for the crime and was ordered to attend therapy after pleading guilty to counts of fourth-degree criminal sexual conduct, misconduct in office, and furnishing a cell phone to a prisoner. Her plea also meant that the prosecution agreed to drop additional counts of second-degree criminal sexual conduct, harboring escapees, and providing contraband in prison.
Johnson reportedly worked as a counselor at the House of Commons, a court-mandated, state-run substance abuse treatment center. She had the opportunity to commit the crimes because she worked the night shift, meaning she was often the only counselor on duty if the men needed anything.
The men, she had sex with, are both residents at the House of Commons, claimed they were not victims. But Ingham County Chief Assistant Prosecutor Lisa McCormick said that Johnson's status as a Community Mental Health Authority of Clinton, Eaton, Ingham Counties employee meant that the men would not have been able to consent to sex.
While working at the facility, Johnson also allegedly provided the men with cell phones and allowed them to leave to purchase alcohol. The claims were backed up by one of the men themselves, who went on to testify the same at the 26-year-old's hearing this past week.
He described his relationship with the counselor as 'flirty' and said he would often go into the property room with Johnson to have sex, claiming they did so because there were no cameras within the room. He also testified that Johnson made up fake doctors' appointments so they could be together outside of the house.
Despite the plethora of charges against Johnson, Ingham County Circuit Court Judge, Joyce Draganchuk said there was no evidence to support or prove that Johnson used her authority to coerce either of the men into sex. And while she went on to praise the defendant for taking the initiative to go to therapy to sort out her mental health, said that Johnson's actions harmed the overall treatment structure and made those living there feel like it was not a legitimate place for treatment.