Houston County jailer accused of criminal sexual conduct with inmate

Bruce Hugo Muenkel denies having a sexual relationship

A jailer who worked for the Houston County Sheriff’s Office has been charged with two felony counts of criminal sexual misconduct, the Sheriff’s Office announced Monday.

A criminal complaint states Bruce Hugo Meunkel, 62, had sexual relations with a woman while she was in custody at the Houston County Jail in January 2014.

The female inmate told a social worker she had an affair with Meunkel when she was in and out of jail for four months that included sexual conduct.

Muenkel told investigators from the Olmsted County Sheriff’s Office he did give the woman a ride in his vehicle and gave her his email address and sent messages to her. He stated he received “loaded messages” that had “sexual overtures” from the woman that made him feel flattered by that he never acted on the emails. Muenkel denied having a sexual relationship with the female inmate.

Muenkel was charged on August 20 with two counts of criminal sex conduct – one 3rd and one 4th degree.  His last day of employment with Houston County was February 27, 2014. He began employment with Houston County on July 15, 2009. Muenkel’s initial court appearance is October 7 at the Houston County CJC.

In a news release, the Sheriff’s Office stated, “The Houston County Sheriff’s Office has policies in place to prevent this behavior and have mandated additional training for all jail staff under the new Prison Rape Elimination Act. The additional training has been completed by all staff of the facility.”