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No one knows how many cases result in the officer being believed over the victim

Candice Bernd

[...] In the 20 years that [rape victim Nicole] Smith’s rapist has been in prison, news accounts of sexual violence at the hands of police officers have only multiplied. This year has already seen a steady trickle of news stories detailing police-perpetrated domestic violence, propositions, harassment, sexual assault, molestation and rape.

Just last month, a county sheriff’s deputy in Georgia has been charged with fondling women involved in court cases; a deputy in Colorado was arrested on a domestic violence-related sex assault charge; a police deputy chief in Utah resigned after allegations of sexual harassment; a woman in New York City filed a lawsuit accusing an officer of rape, assault and battery after the officer allegedly pressured her into a date by promising to clear up her case; a former Georgia officer was sentenced to 35 years on child molestation charges after he forced sex acts from two girls and a woman while on duty; an officer in Texas was arrested on domestic violence charges, saying in a recording that his wife needed to be “cut by a razor, set on fire, beat half to death and left to die”; several sexual assault charges were filed against a former California officer who allegedly molested a 14-year-old Explorer Scout; an officer in North Carolina faces peeping charges; a former Arkansas officer plead guilty to five counts of sexual assault of a 16-year-old girl; a former DC officer admitted in federal court recently he forced underage teenagers to work as escorts out of his apartment; and a former Wisconsin police officer, Steven Zelich, was arrested for allegedly murdering two women and stuffing their bodies into suitcases.

And that’s only just a few of the news accounts from last month – accounts that were made public due to a survivor reporting the attack, or due to the officer being caught by some other means. In reality, there are likely dozens more cases from the month that will go unreported. (Reporting a police attack, of course, means recounting that attack to other police officers.)

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