Over the course of three months, biologically male Karen White sexually molested prisoners at the HMP New Hall in West Yorkshire, England, including 45 year old Cheryle Kempton, who for the first time is speaking out. Kempton is one of four victims of White, a male-born trans woman who was placed in the women's prison facility.
According to the Daily Mail, Kempton firmly believed that White, who was born Stephen Wood, faked being transgender just to take advantage of new legislation that allowed female-identifying males to be housed in women's prisons and then prey on vulnerable women inside those prisons. None of the 360 female inmates at HMP New Hall were told that White was a man identifying as a woman.
The report said that White stood at least six feet tall and often wore a cheap wig and "frumpy" clothes. When asked why he looked that way, White refused to explain and would just say, "I'm a woman."
Kempton was almost halfway through a sentence for burglary after being trapped in a cycle of getting caught up with the law due to drug addiction when she and White became friends behind bars. But after three days of starting a friendship, White demanded that Kempton perform a sex act.
When Kempton clarified and said, "I thought you were a woman," White replied that he "still had" a male sexual organ. Kempton recounted how White had said that "it would work if she didn't take [his hormone] tablets for six weeks." White went on to brag about how he hid the medication between his gum and lip to make other people think he was still taking it. His hormone therapy supposed to lower his testosterone and sex drive, "making it almost impossible for [him] to get aroused."
Kempton said that White had suddenty reached over and groped her left breast before suggesting that she had breast implants. Later, a prison officer asked Kempton if she wanted to file a complaint but regrettably declined. A few weeks later, White pressed up against Kempton at a queue for a workshop toilet.
"[He] pushed [himself] up behind me and I could feel that [he] was aroused," Kempton recalled. "'I went mad. [He] was whispering, 'You know you want it.'"
The following day after the incident, White again accosted Kempton, this time taking her hand and putting it on his crotch. Kempton said she was so "in shock" that she "lost it in anger" that she grabbed a pair of scissors to defend herself.
"I had to be dragged out and [he] was denying it. For that split second [he] had power over me and I'm furious at myself for allowing that as I'm not that kind of person," Kempton said. "I just thought, 'You vile monster.'"
It was not long after that Kempton found out White had sexually assaulted another inmate who he victimized by grooming. White, who is 52, was in prison for rape, sexual assault and wounding. Following the sexual assault against Kempton, the victim found out that others had endured sexual assault at the hands of White as well. She filed a complaint and he was placed in isolation. White was then transferred to HMP Armley, an all-male prison in Leeds, as authorities investigated the sexual assault incidents.
In the U.S., at least one senator is fighting to prevent this from happening to female inmates. Republican Senator Tom Cotton of Arkansas this week introduced legislation that will keep biological male inmates in men's prisons and biological female inmates in women's prisons. According to Yahoo! News, the proposed legislation was in response to reports that President Joe Biden may sign an executive order requiring the Federal Bureau of Prisons to allow transgender individuals to be housed in a prison that is aligned with their gender identity.