Convicted fashion designer Anand Jon sues state prison claiming assault behind bars

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Convicted fashion designer Anand Jon Alexander has filed a lawsuit against the California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation, alleging prison officials failed to keep him safe and to provide adequate medical care after he was assaulted behind bars.

The Indian American fashion designer popularly known as Anand Jon filed the lawsuit Jan 13 alleging,he was attacked by another inmate while waiting to make a phone call on May 18, 2019 and was allegedly stabbed multiple times in the face and kicked on the ground.

The lawsuit filed in the U.S. District Court of Southern District of California named CDCR as well as Marcus Pollard, the Warden of R.J. Donovan Correctional Facility, and Daniel Paramo, the former Warden and R. Ramirez, Correctional Officer.

Alexander has served 12 years of a 59 year sentence after being convicted of rape in 2008. He was arrested and indicted on sexual assault claims in Los Angeles, followed by similar filings in New York City and then Texas and in November 2008, following a jury trial in Los Angeles.

According to earlier news reports, the lanky designer with stylishly-cut thick black hair had said he was not good at separating business from pleasure and dated multiple women he met online simultaneously, and they traveled with him and stayed with him in his apartments in New York and Beverly Hills. Many of those women later accused him of forcing them to perform lurid sex acts.

The lawsuit last week alleged that CDCR and the defendants failed to protect Alexander by knowingly allowing a known violent Level IV assailant to be housed with, and have open access to, Alexander, a Level II low-risk inmate with no history of violence classified as a “sensitive needs” inmate.

According to the lawsuit, Alexander’s attorney has asked for a jury trial and exemplary and punitive damages in an amount according to proof and which is fair, just, reasonable against all defendants.

Named as plaintiff in the lawsuit are Ralph Diaz, Secretary of CDCR,besides Pollard, Paramo, Ramirez and others.

Alexander filed a written claim with the State of California for the injuries and on or about December 24, 2019,his claims were deemed rejected as a matter of law due to the lack of a formal written denial within 45 days.

In court papers his attorney Keith H. Rutman said Alexander acknowledged the existence of blurred lines between his personal and professional relationships and has recognized the immoral lifestyle he was part of in the fashion industry. “Nevertheless, he holds steadfast to his innocence. He has been a model prisoner and recognized for his commitment towards rehabilitation,” the lawsuit said.

It said the lawsuit stems from an event which occurred on May 18, 2019 when he was the victim of a grievous assault perpetrated by another inmate. The lawsuit said the attack was likely a “racially-motivated hate crime.”

Alexander, a "first tier" resident, was waiting by the telephones to call his mother for her 70th birthday on May 18, 2019 when a Level IV inmate named Dominic Rizzo4, a “second tier” inmate, somehow managed to/or was allowed to sneak up on him from behind and stab Alexander multiple times in the face. While bloodied and blacked out on the floor, he was kicked and beaten. This attack on Alexander was nothing less than an attempted murder committed by Rizzo, the lawsuit alleged.

According to a KGTV report, the American Justice Alliance, a group which seeks to free prisoners who have been wrongfully convicted, submitted an amicus brief to the Federal Central District Court.

They wrote Alexander “was targeted by a collusion of disgruntled business associates and some former girlfriends, who have admitted they were out to “bring him down,” and “get revenge,” seeking notoriety and monetary benefits. He was then subject to a prosecution and trial riddled with extraordinary police misconduct.”

The Jan. 15 report said so far, no criminal charges have been filed against the assailant of Alexander.

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