Wednesday, April 15, 2009

Detectives Investigating Officer Accused of Raping Woman


Issaquah police detectives are investigating a Medina police officer accused of tricking a woman into meeting him at a bar, then raping her.

According to the affidavit for search warrant, the incident began with a traffic stop on Highway 520 last November when an officer pulled over a woman and accused her of driving with a suspended license. While searching her car, the officer said he found marijuana inside.

The woman said the officer handcuffed her and placed in the back of the patrol car. She said the officer opened the dividing partition, and "kept looking at her and telling her she was attractive and beautiful." He also "reached over to fix her scarf and put his hand on her," the document said.

The woman said she told the officer she had not been driving with a suspended license as she had already paid for her previous ticket. She also said she did not want a drug charge on her record. The officer then told the woman not to worry because "the charges would go away," the documents said. The officer cited and released the driver.

Detectives said the officer called the woman the next morning and asked her to meet at the Joker Pub and Grill in Issaquah. He said he had for her a letter to the prosecutor's office that discusses the dismissal of the charges.

The affidavit said the two met at the bar, then headed over to the officer's home near the Issaquah Highlands. The woman said she agreed to go to the officer's home but expressly said she did not want to have sex.

At his home, the woman said the officer put his gun on the table and said, "People are scared of police officers because they have power and authority, and a gun and a badge," the document said. The alleged victim told detectives she thought he was trying to intimidate her.

The officer gave the woman a tour of his home and when they got to the bedroom, the documents state the officer pushed the woman down on the bed, held her down and began to take her clothes off. When she protested, he said, "You don't really mean that," and sexually assaulted her, the affidavit said.

The woman said she didn't know what to do because the man who had raped her was a cop. Detectives only learned of the allegations while investigating another rape case involving the same woman.

Issaquah detectives said in the weeks following the incident, the officer wrote e-mails and sent personal letters to the prosecutor's office, asking for the charges against the woman to be dropped.

Between the November traffic stop and February 9 - the day the charges against the woman were dropped - the officer and the alleged victim exchanged nine calls and text messages, the affidavit said. The woman told detectives she called the officer each time she had a court date to find out why the case had not been dismissed.

Investigators are waiting for phone records to be released before they pursue charges.

"Right now, the investigation surrounds an allegation of rape and official misconduct," said Issaquah Deputy Chief Steve Cozart. "A crime is a crime. We investigate it regardless of who the allegations are against."

The requested phone records are expected to be released within a week.

KOMO News has chosen not to name the police officer since he has not been arrested or charged. He has been placed on paid administrative leave for the duration of the investigation.

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