Trio says woman was raped by Logan deputies, Chapmanville officer

Kelly Holleran Oct. 13, 2009, 7:53am

CHARLESTON -– Two anonymous Logan County men and an unidentified woman claim the woman was raped by three intoxicated Logan County sheriff's deputies and a Chapmanville police officer after leaving a Logan bar.

The Logan residents, identified only as Jane Doe, John Doe 1 and John Doe 2, filed a lawsuit Sept. 6 in U.S. District Court for the Southern District of West Virginia against Logan County Sheriff's Department, Logan County Sheriff Eddie Hunter, three unknown Logan County Sheriff's deputies, the city of Chapmanville, the Chapmanville Police Department and an unidentified Chapmanville police officer.

According to the lawsuit, Jane Doe, John Doe 1 and John Doe 2 left the Glitter Girls show bar in Logan at about 3 a.m. on Sept. 7, 2008. Jane Doe and John Doe 2 proceeded to climb into a car parked in the bar's parking lot with Jane Doe entering on the driver's side, while John Doe 1 walked away from the car and up the street, the suit states.

As John Doe 1 walked under an underpass near the bar, he was approached by three Logan County sheriff's deputies and by the Chapmanville officer, who allegedly were all intoxicated and asked John Doe 1 of the whereabouts of Jane Doe, the complaint says.

After telling the officers that Jane Doe was across the streets, John Doe 1 claims he was frisked by the police and his wallet was allegedly emptied.

Leaving John Doe 1, the four officers went across the street where they approached Jane Doe and John Doe 2 and administered field sobriety tests on Jane Doe, all of which she failed, according to the complaint.

"The deputy officer defendants intimidated, assaulted and threatened John Doe 2, emptied his wallet; and ordered John Doe 2 to drive John Doe 1 home or 'they (the deputy officer defendants) would kill both of them,'" the suit states.

Logan County sheriff's deputies proceeded to shove Jane Doe into the back of their cruiser without informing her if she was under arrest, the complaint says. They then drove up Route 44 toward Switzer while forcing Jane Doe to drink more alcohol and while one of the officers sexually assaulted Jane Doe, she claims.

"When Jane Doe resisted these advances, she was physically grabbed and held down, and told that 'she was getting off easy because she could have been arrested for driving under the influence,'" the complaint says.

When they arrived outside Switzer, the officers stopped the patrol car on a dirt road, took Jane Doe from the backseat and shoved her onto the hood of their car.

"Three of the four deputy officer defendants proceeded to rape Jane Doe," the suit states. "The fourth deputy officer defendant remained in the patrol car; sick, vomiting, and intoxicated."

After they were done sexually assaulting Jane Doe, the officers intended to take her home when they saw John Doe 1 and John Doe 2 in a church parking lot, according to the complaint. So, the officers dropped Jane Doe off 50 feet from the church parking lot, the complaint says.

John Does 1 and 2 convinced Jane Doe to go to Logan Regional Hospital, and she was later transferred to Charleston Area Medical Center, the suit states.

"Unprovoked and unjustified attacks and assaults on innocent civilians by law enforcement officers are intolerable in a civilized society," the suit states. "As such these deputy officer defendants' unprovoked and unjustified attacks and assaults on Jane Doe, John Doe 2, and John Doe 1 were atrocious, intolerable, and so extreme and outrageous that it exceeded the bounds of decency."

Jane Doe and John Does 1 and 2 claim the officers' conduct was a violation of their constitutional rights. Because of the officers' actions, the plaintiffs claim they sustained physical injuries, severe emotional distress, embarrassment, mental anguish and economic loss, including medical expenses and lost income.

In addition, Jane Doe suffered embarrassment because of the incident, according to the complaint.

In the 12-count suit, the plaintiffs are seeking compensatory and punitive damages, plus attorneys' fees, costs and other relief the court deems just.

Richard D. Lindsay II, Matthew C. Lindsay and Richard D. Lindsay of Tabor, Lindsay and Associates in Charleston will be representing them.

U.S. District Court case number: 2:09-cv-990

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