Maine Correctional Center

The Maine Department of Corrections is conducting a second round of coronavirus testing at the Maine Correctional Center in Windham.

Susan Sharon / Maine Public

The number of women incarcerated in Maine is rising fast. In the past six years the number of female inmates at the Maine Correctional Center (MCC) in Windham has grown from about 150 to more than 220, as of April. And the state Department of Corrections has a problem: the overcrowded women's facility is housed in a men's prison.

Maine’s prison system has had a tough time finding and keeping guards, with as many as three dozen officer positions unfilled at the Maine State Prison. A pay raise approved by the Legislature last year has helped the recruitment effort, but now the system faces a new challenge.

Guards had complained about long hours and low pay. And they told lawmakers that they could make better money as private security guards.

WINDHAM, Maine - The Maine Department of Corrections says state police are reviewing the death of a prisoner at the Maine Correctional Center in Windham.

The department says 67-year-old Robert Lewis died early on Tuesday. He was serving a three-year sentence for possession of sexually explicit material of a minor under 12. He had served approximately four months of the sentence. Lewis's full sentence was five years but part of the sentence was suspended.

A state police spokesman said the death isn't considered suspicious.

WINDHAM, Maine - A former Maine prison guard has been charged with sexually assaulting a female inmate at the Maine Correctional Center in Windham.

The Portland Press Herald reports that 23-year-old Auburn resident Bret Butterfield is being held at the York County Jail in Alfred on $50,000 cash bail.

Butterfield is accused of assaulting a 25-year-old convicted burglar who was released in April. She's not being identified because she's considered a victim in the case.