Donovan State Prison guard says he was fired after exposing corruption

Posted at 5:48 PM, Oct 11, 2017
and last updated 2017-10-11 21:04:10-04

SAN DIEGO (KGTV) - He said he exposed alleged corruption at Donovan State Prison. Now, Albert Limon says he has officially been fired.

Limon first spoke to 10News May of last year. During that time, he was on medical leave. He said he was terminated in August.

“I know what was right, and I did what was right,” Limon said.

He did not want to show his face, but allowed Team 10 to use his name. He is still afraid of retaliation. He said his parents have received death threats and said his family’s vehicles were vandalized.

“Fearful, concerned,” Limon said. “Worried for my safety, for their own safety.”

The now-former correctional officer says he exposed other guards at Donovan State Prison stealing money and cash cards from inmates in 2010.

“They were stealing the cards from their property … and then distributing them amongst themselves,” Limon said.

He said his complaint was leaked.

“My heart sank. The amount of fear that went through me was incredible,” Limon said.

He switched job assignments to drive inmates across the state. There, Limon said he blew the whistle on guards and even supervisors sleeping on the job.

Limon said harassment increased. He found rat traps on his seat and a "hurt feelings report" in his mailbox.

Limon’s lawsuit stated he does not believe any of his co-workers were disciplined. However, he was.

He received a notice earlier this year showing reasons for his firing.

One reason was for giving photos to 10News.

“I included those photographs in the complaint, which became public record,” said Laurence Haines, Limon’s attorney. Haines said Limon did not give anything to 10News.

Haines said all that his client wanted was reasonable accommodations to return to work, like a position away from the prison guards. Since he said Limon’s employer is the State of California, Haines said there were plenty of other options.

“The firing has been a retaliatory action. It simply adds fuel to the fire,” Haines said.

“I was worried about the effects that was going to come from it,” Limon said. He added that he knew what he did “was right” and given a second chance, he would do it again.

Limon said he is still suffering from PTSD. He is still in the care of a doctor.

A Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation spokesperson said via email, they are “researching my inquiry” when Team 10 asked for a comment.

However, in a formal response to the lawsuit dated October 2016, they denied that Limon “has suffered any injuries or damages.” The department denied all the allegations.