Woman files lawsuit in police `flex squad' rape case

Maryland

October 20, 2006|By Julie Bykowicz | Julie Bykowicz,SUN REPORTER

A woman who says she was sexually assaulted by a city police officer who is accused in two separate rape cases has filed a civil lawsuit.

The multimillion-dollar lawsuit filed in Baltimore Circuit Court names three members of the now-defunct Southwestern District "flex squad" - Jemini Jones, Brian Shaffer and Steven Hatley.

Jones, 29, was indicted in May on charges of rape, sex offense and misconduct in office in the Oct. 24 incident described in the civil lawsuit. Neither Shaffer, 29, nor Hatley, 28, faces criminal charges in that incident.

In her lawsuit filed this week, the woman, who is not being identified by The Sun because she is an alleged sexual assault victim, says that the officers searched her boyfriend's apartment while he was away. The officers found a gun, the suit states, and Jones told the woman "that she had to do something to get herself out of this situation."

The lawsuit states that Jones had sex with the woman and that the other two officers declined sex but did nothing to stop Jones.

The accusations of the woman are similar to those made by another woman in December. In that case, the woman says she was taken to the Southwestern District police station where Jones asked her for sex in exchange for avoiding arrest.

The woman also said Hatley and Shaffer were present, and all three were indicted early this year on rape, sex offense and misconduct charges.

The Baltimore Police Department disbanded the Southwestern flex squad and suspended those three officers without pay when the December allegations and subsequent indictments arose.

Police did not learn of the October allegations until after the December incident became public. Both rape trials are scheduled for December.

julie.bykowicz@baltsun.com

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