Republican women want Corrections Commissioner Marcus Hicks out of a job too.
All seven of the state’s Republican Assemblywomen called for Hicks’ removal over reports of severe beatings at the Edna Mahan Correctional Facility, the state’s only women’s prison.
“The report of thirty officers and supervisors on leave because of allegations of abuse should stop all of us in our tracks,” they said in a joint statement. “This is not a few bad actors scenario. The continued abuses at the Edna Mahan demonstrate the need for further overhaul to cleanse the culture of abuse and bring justice to the women who endured these brutalities.”
The lawmakers are Assemblywomen BettyLou DeCroce (R-Parsippany-Troy Hills), Serena DiMaso (R-Holmdel), Aura Dunn (R-Mendham), DiAnne Gove (R-Long Beach), Nancy Munoz (R-Summit), Holly Schepisi (R-River Vale) and Jean Stanfield (R-Westampton).
They join a growing number of lawmakers who have asked Hicks resign or be put on leave in the wake of an NJ Advance Media report that found dozens of staff at the facility were suspended after being accused of beating inmates, including one woman who was beaten so severely she is now confined to a wheelchair.
The list of legislators includes the highest-ranking woman in the legislature, Senate Majority Leader Loretta Weinberg (D-Teaneck), who on Monday urged Gov. Phil Murphy to suspend Hicks and Edna Mahan Administrator Sarah Davis, the facility’s Warden.
The beatings, which are now the subject of a state criminal probe, aren’t the first abuses at the facility, which just months ago reached a tentative settlement agreement with the U.S. Department of Justice over sexual assaults there.