A lawsuit brought against the NYPD by one of their own officers makes explosive claims against multiple officers who she says repeatedly and brutally raped her for years without repercussions. According to Maria Mendez, who worked in the city’s 32nd precinct for 14 years, two officers, a detective, and one FDNY firefighter repeatedly drugged, beat and raped her without consequence, despite her superiors knowing about the abuse.
According to Mendez’s lawsuit, this 14-year veteran of the NYPD was regularly forced to ingest oxycodone, ecstasy and alcohol. According to Mendez, the rapist cops videoed the abuse and would share the videos with high-ranking officers like Deputy Chief Michael Baker and Capt. Neil Zuber who allegedly viewed the content but looked the other way instead of acting.
In her lawsuit, Mendez says the abuse began when her former patrol partner, Officer Ryan Marrero drugged her with oxycontin before violently raping and sodomizing her. The NY Post reports:
Once photos and videos of the rapes made the rounds in the department, other cops, including Officer Jimmy Gutierres and Detective Michael Ganz, demanded sex acts from her and then raped her, the suit states.
During one occasion, Marrero forced her to attend an NYPD Christmas party with him and said if she didn’t, he’d tell her husband about the drugs and nude pictures he forced her to take.
Following the party, Marrero allegedly grabbed her by the throat, shoved a silver handgun in her mouth and ordered her into the back seat of his car, where he proceeded to rape her vaginally, anally and orally.
When she told him to stop, Marrero allegedly told her to “shut the f–k up” and that if she “doesn’t stop resisting,” he would take pictures of her and send them to her husband. He then called a fellow officer, Peter Montalbano, and told him to join him “so he can have some fun too with a Dominican slut like her,” the suit claims.
In the lawsuit, Mendez claims she was afraid to inform her supervisors because “who would believe that a trained police officer could be sexually assaulted much less by another police officer,” and any time she tried to report the abuse afterward, superiors did nothing to help.
In horrific detail, Mendez describes the abuse in her lawsuit, claiming Morrero would rape her in public on streets across Harlem, knowing they would they wouldn’t be caught. According to the lawsuit, the rapes happened all across the city as well as in the police officer’s lounge, and even while they were out on emergency calls.
Mendez says at one point, Morrero brought her to the top of a city building and threatened to throw her off if she told.
Mendez says she was repeatedly beaten, “brutally punched,” “kicked” and “strangled,” as an officer would force their “fist” inside her anus and vagina, causing her series injuries, leaving her physically deformed.
Mendez claims that Morrero would brag about raping unconscious women “because they don’t fight back,” and he also showed her photos of underage girls he claimed to have raped as well.
After Mendez finally got someone in the department to hear her case in July of 2019, she presented the Manhattan District Attorney’s Sex Crimes Unit with a slew of evidence, including mobile devices, 20 activity logs and more than 100 pairs of “soiled” underwear and a DNA sample.
However, a year later, Mendez was told there would be no prosecution. Despite the trove of physical evidence and the deformities to “her vagina and anus requiring surgical repair,” the Sex Crimes Unit claimed they didn’t have enough evidence to move forward. Case closed.
Now, Mendez is suing and her lawsuit exposes an alleged deep pit of corruption within the NYPD’s ranks. The NY Post reports:
The suit paints a vivid picture of sexual abuse and harassment that ran rampant at the precinct where Mendez was not only regularly raped but was subjected to sexualized comments and requests by lieutenants and sergeants — and, eventually, deaf ears when she tried to report the crimes.
Lt. Julio Calle allegedly asked Mendez to “spoon feed him in his bed because she’s Dominican” and also asked to suck her toes, while Sgt. Alfred Gallicchio is accused of taking pictures of a sergeant while she pumped breast milk — and then daring a subordinate to steal the milk and drink it, which he did.
Gallicchio, a union delegate, is also accused of asking Mendez to perform threesomes and making grotesque comments like “Let me drink the p—y juice” and “I’ll lick your p—y all day” and other remarks about having sex with her.
When Mendez confided in Lt. Filastin Srour, a woman, about the constant rapes and abuse she was enduring, Srour allegedly failed to take the necessary action she was required to as a supervisor. Instead, she called Mendez a “slut” and threatened that if she “didn’t stop making false allegations against good officers … she’d be forced to take action against her,” the suit claims.
What this case illustrates, if Mendez’s claims are true, is the power of the blue wall of silence. Even when exposing horrifying abuse within their ranks, the blue wall of silence will protect their own and cast out those who attempt to shine a light into the darkness.