(CN) – A Beverly Hills police sergeant claims the Police Department retaliated against him after he reported that another sergeant inappropriately treated the body of late singer Whitney Houston.
Brian Weir sued the City of Beverly Hills in Los Angeles Superior Court. The city and Does 1-100 are the only defendants.
Weir says he was called to the scene of Houston’s death in February 2012 at the Beverly Hilton Hotel.
As other officers arrived and prepared the scene for investigation, Weir says in the complaint, he saw Sgt. Terry Nutall disrespect Houston’s body by removing the sheet covering it and making inappropriate remarks about the singer “still looking good.”
Weir says he reported the incident to his superiors – and was soon removed from his position on the SWAT and K-9 units, demoted, and denied opportunities and promotions.
Weir described the incident in the lawsuit: “Detective Sergeant Nutall for no legitimate law enforcement inquiry, investigative or other proper and legal purpose, knelt beside and leaned over the decedent, removed the sheet and/or other coverings from the body of the decedent to an area below the pubic region of the decedent’s body, and came in close proximity to touching the body of the decedent while making inappropriate comments to the effect and substance that the decedent ‘looked attractive for a woman of her age and current state’ and ‘Damn, she’s still looking good, huh?'”
After Weir blew the whistle on Nutall, he says, he received harassing comments from other officers.
Weir claims Nutall’s actions violated federal regulations about disturbing and/or moving a body from the position of death without permission from the coroner. This could cause contamination of potential DNA or evidence.
He also claims Nutall treated the body of the deceased in a way that would outrage ordinary family sensibilities.
Once he disclosed the information, Weir said, the city ostracized him and spread rumors to hurt his reputation. He claims the city’s actions hampered his career and ability to advance.
He seeks restoration to his former position, lost wages and benefits, medical expenses, and damages for retaliation, mental suffering and emotional distress.
He is represented by Christopher Brizzolarra.
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