Many stories I read about annoy me, frustrate me — heck, they even tick me off. It takes a strong reprehensible element to a story for me to actually be truly disgusted by something I read. But that’s exactly what happened when I ran across the story concerning the City of Los Angeles and the settlement they agreed to pay to a woman who accused the Los Angeles Police Department of sexual abuse.
A woman who accused two Los Angeles police officers of threatening to put her in jail unless she had sex with them.
The city council voted unanimously to approve the payout of $575,000 to the woman who accused the officers of this despicable act. This woman is actually just one of four women the two officers, James Nichols and Luis Valenzuela, allegedly attempted to have sex with while threatening each victim with jail time.
What these two narcotics officers would do is lure these women in as “informants” to help them on other cases, but as time went on they would tell them that they would no longer protect them unless they agreed to have sex with them.
According to the LA Times:
The officers used similar threats on three other woman who also worked for them as informants or knew the officers from previous arrests, the affidavit showed. One of the alleged victims said the two officers pulled up alongside her in a Volkswagon Jetta as she was walking her dog in Hollywood. The officers, whom she recognized as the same cops who had arrested her previously, ordered her into the car, according to the affidavit.
The woman said she felt compelled to comply. Valenzuela, she said, got into the back seat with the woman and handed her dog to Nichols, who drove the car to a more secluded area. “Why don’t you cut out that tough girl crap,” the woman recounted Valenzuela saying as he forced her to perform oral sex on him, according to police records contained in the warrant.
It’s a shame that so many brave men and women in law enforcement often get a bad name because of the few who act in such reprehensible ways.
As of now the two officers are awaiting disciplinary hearings.
This is what makes so many Americans so angry. These two pathetic excuses for human beings should be behind bars — instead, it’s probably a safe bet that the worst they’ll get is their “pink slip” from the force. I genuinely hope I’m wrong.
Just because someone wears the uniform of a police officer doesn’t make them above the law. If these men abused their powers, threatening women with jail time to get them to agree to have sex, they should be put behind bars. The fact that they were veteran police officers should have no impact whatsoever on determining their punishment or the charges they face.
I guess time will tell. And while I’m glad the city did the right thing by agreeing to this settlement, I still get this feeling that these two pathetic excuses for police officers will get by with nothing more than a slap on the wrist.
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