- Associated Press - Thursday, April 9, 2015

HELENA, Mont. (AP) - A former Jefferson County jailer has been sentenced to 20 years in prison for offering cigarettes to three female inmates in exchange for sexual favors.

District Judge Loren Tucker sentenced Rodney Mortimore of Boulder on Wednesday, the Helena Independent Record (https://bit.ly/1aNRCO6) reported.

Mortimore, 45, had earlier pleaded no contest to three counts of sexual intercourse without consent. Under state law, inmates cannot legally consent to sex with jail employees.

He was arrested in April 2014 after a 19-year-old inmate made a complaint. An investigation found two other inmates with similar stories, and Mortimore was initially charged with seven counts of sexual intercourse without consent.

One of the women filed a federal lawsuit against Jefferson County last fall, arguing the county violated her rights by detaining her in a facility whose policies and procedures and through its failure to train allowed its staff to rape inmates in custody.

Mortimore also has denied two misdemeanor counts of selling alcohol to someone under the age of 21. The investigation of a fatal crash near Boulder found the 20-year-old driver who died in a crash while traveling the wrong direction on Interstate 15 had purchased alcohol from a convenience store where Mortimore was working on June 25.

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Information from: Independent Record, https://www.helenair.com

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