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Detective suing LAPD for not stopping abuse, revenge porn

A veteran police detective is suing the Los Angeles Police Department (LAPD) as well as a fellow officer. The woman, who has been with the LAPD for three decades, says the officer, with whom she was in a romantic relationship, physically and sexually assaulted her. According to the lawsuit, the relationship began in 2013 but turned abusive in 2016. On one occasion in 2017, she says he raped her in a motel room. She also accuses him of punching her in a diner.

She also says that the officer, who's now on administrative leave, threatened to distribute explicit photos if she ended the relationship, as she says she sought to do in 2017. At a press conference this month announcing the lawsuit, the detective said, "With these photos, he emotionally terrorized me. He controlled and manipulated me." He eventually did distribute photos of her within the LAPD.

Further, according to the lawsuit, the LAPD did nothing to help her. She says she reported the officer's abusive behavior to several "senior LAPD officers." These reportedly included her supervisor and her husband, who was the LAPD's assistant chief. She says they did nothing. The detective and her husband reportedly had an open relationship.

Her husband has had his own problems. He resigned from the force last year after being caught by undercover officers having sex with a subordinate officer.

Prosecutors in LA are investigating the former officer regarding the criminal assault allegations against him. The detective's attorney noted that the distribution of explicit photos to get back at someone (commonly known as "revenge porn") is also illegal under California law.

An LAPD spokesman says the department "immediately initiated an administrative investigation into this matter" when the detective asked for a restraining order last November. That order is currently in place.

The LAPD has dealt with more than one lawsuit alleging sexual harassment in recent years. Last year, the city settled a suit for $1.8 million. As the detective's attorney asked, "How can we expect the LAPD to stand up for women victims when they can't stand up for one of their own?"

While sexual harassment and sexual assault are two different things, no form of sexual harassment should be tolerated in any workplace. If you've been the victim of sexual harassment and your employer hasn't taken the appropriate action to stop it, it's wise to determine your legal options.

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