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Old 12-27-2018, 08:35 PM
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Default 18-Year-Old Said She Was Raped While In Police Custody

An 18-Year-Old Said She Was Raped While In Police Custody. The Officers Say She Consented.

Quote:
Anna was sitting in the parked car with two friends when a charcoal gray van pulled up and flashlight beams momentarily blinded her. The 18-year-old had grown up in south Brooklyn and spent many Friday nights like this driving around the city with friends, looking for places to hang out away from home. On this night, though, September 15, 2017, sometime between 7:30 p.m. and 8 p.m., she crossed paths with the cops.
There were two of them, both plainclothes detectives over 6 feet tall and powerfully built, flashing their badges and asking questions. There was weed in the front cupholder, and soon the detectives ordered the three occupants out of the car. As Anna later recalled, the detectives handcuffed her and told her friends, both young men, they were free to go. Then, she said they led her — a slender woman just over 5 feet tall — into the back of the unmarked police van with tinted windows.
Inside, Anna said the detectives took turns raping her in the backseat as the van cruised the dark streets and as she sat handcuffed, crying and repeatedly telling them “No.” Between assaults, she said, the van pulled over so the cops could switch drivers. Less than an hour later, a few minutes’ drive from where it all began, the detectives dropped Anna off on the side of the road, a quarter-mile from a police station, surveillance footage shows. She stood on the sidewalk, her arms wrapped around her chest, looking up and down the dimly lit street and pacing slowly before borrowing a cell phone from a passerby to call a friend.
The cops made no arrest, issued no citation, filed no paperwork about the stop. Hours later, Anna and her mother went to a hospital, where Anna told nurses two detectives had sexually assaulted her, according to hospital records. Semen collected in Anna’s rape kit matched the DNA of detectives Eddie Martins, 37, and Richard Hall, 33, of the Brooklyn South narcotics unit. Both have since resigned from the force and been charged with rape.

Anna assumed it was a simple case: Two cops had sex with a woman in their custody in the middle of their shift.

When a Facebook friend questioned whether there was enough evidence to dispute the officers’ claim that the sex was consensual, Anna wrote back, “Listen man it doesn't ****ing matter they’re on duty police officers its a ****ing violation these are the people we call for help not to get ****ed.”
But Anna didn’t know that in New York, there is no law specifically stating that it is illegal for police officers or sheriff’s deputies in the field to have sex with someone in their custody. It is one of 35 states where armed law enforcement officers can evade sexual assault charges by claiming that such an encounter — from groping to intercourse — was consensual, according to a BuzzFeed News review of every state legal code.

....Policing is a male-dominated field — Department of Justice statistics show that more than 80% of officers are men — where abuse is more rampant than statistics indicate because victims are less likely to report officer misconduct. “Police abuse of authority is often concealed,” said Norm Stamper, a former Seattle police chief. “Victims fear coming forward for fear of retaliation.” Officers who rape have plenty of weapons at their disposal: the threat of arrest, the access to a victim’s personal records, and the aura of immunity that comes from carrying a badge. The most sweeping investigation into the scope of police sexual misconduct, by the Associated Press in 2015, counted 990 law enforcement officers who lost their job for sexual misconduct between 2009 and 2014.
“Part of the reason the problem’s so bad in policing is there are people who are drawn to the job for the gun and the badge and the authority,” said Penny Harrington, a former Portland, Oregon, police chief. “And everybody else just keeps their mouth shut.”....

...Across the country, police departments are being pushed to confront longtime patterns of abuse. In October, a retired Anchorage, Alaska, Police Department captain wrote a newspaper column detailing the “incessant” sexual harassment she experienced from fellow cops during her career. At a Chicago Police Board meeting in January, a woman shared her experience of getting raped by a cop during her teenage years in the 1980s. ...

...Defendants Martins and Hall haven’t told their side. The gist of their defense at this point: “There was no nonconsensual sexual encounter,” said Martins’ lawyer, Mark Bederow, a former assistant district attorney in Manhattan who has worked criminal defense since 2004. He denied that Anna was handcuffed and that the men used physical force on her. While defense lawyers won’t say what, according to the cops, happened inside the van, their public statements and the evidence they have presented so far point to their only possible legal strategy: Painting Anna as a temptress who came onto them.

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