Female Inmate Loses Appeal In Wyoming Discrimination Case
A female inmate at the center of a federal discrimination lawsuit against the Wyoming Department of Corrections has lost her appeal after a ruling in the Tenth Circuit Court of Appeals.
Taylor Blanchard was a 23-year-old first-time offender when she was charged with conspiracy to deliver a controlled substance. Her age and the nature of the crime made her eligible for a boot camp that would have cut down her six- to ten-year sentence significantly. However, the Wyoming Department of Corrections only offered the in-state program to men.
"She was denied that solely because she's a woman. So the whole thing about it just stinks - not just for Taylor, but for all women in Wyoming," said Stephen Pevar, a senior staff attorney for the American Civil Liberties Union who represented Blanchard in the case.
According to Pevar, the state sent Blanchard to a similar, though inferior, program in Florida. In early August the judge ruled her case moot as Blanchard had completed that out-of-state program.
To Pevar's knowledge, Wyoming still doesn't offer the boot camp to women. The Wyoming Department of Corrections said it would not answer that question without a freedom of information request, a process that can take weeks to months to complete.
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