A guard at the Bucks County Correctional Facility was charged Wednesday with harassing and using sexually crude language toward inmates in summer 2013, according to the Bucks County District Attorney's Office.
A grand jury presentment said correctional officer Joseph Mullen, 28, made a number of references to homosexual acts toward inmates while patroling the prison's Delta Block, occasionally asking them to expose themselves to him, or walking into their cells while they were using the bathroom or preparing to shower.
In one instance, the presentment says, Mullen released three inmates from a locked cell after they played the children's game patty-cake and hugged at his request.
In another scenario, the presentment alleges, Mullen told an inmate he was "sexy" when the inmate was sweating, one of a number of remarks Mullen allegedly made to various inmates within the cell block.
District Attorney David Heckler said in a statement that "this type of conduct will not be tolerated."
Mullen's attorney, Trevan Borum, said his client "categorically denies" the charges.
"We are looking forward to our day in court," Borum said.
Mullen was arraigned Wednesday before Magisterial District Judge Mark Douple, officials said.
He was charged with one count of official oppression and one count of harassment, and he was released on $75,000 unsecured bail.
- Chris Palmer