January 12, 2022

Notice of complaint related to 2022-0003

Complainant alleges that an Austin police officer behaved inappropriately during an interview with a sexual assault survivor.

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NOTICE OF COMPLAINT January 12, 2022 ICMS #: 2022-0003 On January 3, 2022 the OPO received an online complaint. The complainant alleges: Officer responded to a report of sexual assault at on . He entered the room and quickly introduced himself. The survivor was sitting down on the couch, and Officer still standing, said "so what happened?" in a nonchalant tone. I asked him if he could sit down and he responded that he was "too fat". The forensic nurse, , offered to find him a larger chair. He eventually sat down. Officer repeated the same questions over and over. He asked the survivor, "did the assault occur before or after you were released from ?" even though this was irrelevant to the matter at hand. The survivor stated that the assailant pushed his way into her apartment. Officer began a question with, "so when you allowed this guy to enter your apartment...." Officer held up his hand and said "wait" several times throughout the interaction and fixated on certain details of her story - it was clear he didn’t believe the survivor. Officer line of questioning jumped back and forth between the sexual assault that was being reported that evening and events that had happened months ago. Officer asked for either me or to step outside with him. At this time he told that people can experience delusions of sexual assault. explained that the survivor’s memory gaps could be a result of trauma. He insisted he needed to establish a timeline. When he returned, he resumed the same line of repetitive questioning. When Officer stepped outside to call a detective, the survivor stated, "I just want to go home". Before her interaction with Officer she stated she wanted to report to law enforcement and have a full speculum exam. When he left, she opted to just have swabs collected. I believe that the way Officer treated this survivor absolutely affected the way that she proceeded and his behavior discouraged her from having the full exam conducted. This notice of complaint is a request for Internal Affairs to initiate an investigation to determine if the employee conduct is within compliance of APD policy, Civil Service Rules, and Municipal Civil Service Rules.
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