Photo: Stefanie Keenan/Getty Images for YouTube Beauty
The election was not the only depressing thing to happen in Florida this week. On Monday, November 7, beauty YouTuber and Hype House star Nikita Dragun was arrested at the Goodtime Hotel in Miami Beach, Florida, after splashing water from a water bottle on a police officer. The police were called to Dragun’s hotel room after complaints of Dragun “walking around the pool area naked” and causing a disturbance when asked to stop, TMZ reported. She was arrested for “felony battery on a police officer, misdemeanor disorderly conduct, and misdemeanor battery” and was taken to Miami-Dade County’s Turner Guilford Knight Correctional Center.
On November 8, she appeared in bond court virtually, and a now-viral recording of the proceedings revealed that Dragun, a trans woman, was confined in the men’s unit of the correctional center. In her bond hearing, Dragun asked judge Mindy Glazer, “Do I have to stay here in the men’s unit, still?” to which Glazer responded, “Yeah, I don’t make the rules up there.” Dragun posted a $5,000 bond and was released from jail. “The situation with Nikita, who is legally female, being placed in a men’s unit of a Florida jail is extremely disturbing and dangerous,” her publicist Jack Ketsoyan said in a statement to Miami’s Local 10 News. “This decision made by the Miami-Dade County Corrections Department directly violates their protocol, which mandates that transgender inmates are classified and housed based on safety needs and gender identity. Nikita has been released and is now safe. Thank you for respecting her privacy during this time.”
A representative for the Miami-Dade prison system released a statement to TMZ denying that Dragun was placed in a men’s unit because she was never booked prior to her release. “All inmates undergoing our intake process remain in an open seating (open booking) area, in the presence of correctional staff,” states the rep. “Additionally, inmate Dragun was placed in a holding cell by herself due to her high profile status before being released, and she was escorted by an LGBTQ officer during her time at the corrections facility.”
Miami-Dade jails would have you believe that they are a safer place for transgender and queer people than Miami-Dade schools. “Miami-Dade Corrections and Rehabilitation Department (MDCR) is committed to protecting the rights of the transgender community and of all LGBTQ people,” the rep writes. “MDCR has procedures in place for the appropriate intake, housing, and medical needs of transgender inmates, and we are committed to ensuring that all inmates in our custody, including transgender persons, are treated appropriately throughout our intake, classification and placement process.” Not sure if this is the slay the freaking prison state thinks it is.
This is a developing story.