HOUSTON (CN) – A man claims in Federal Court that a jailer beat and raped him with a billy club in a Houston city jail, saying, “How do you like this, you faggot?” – then said he would not have done it had he known he was assaulting a veteran.
DL sued the City of Houston, its Police Department, John Doe Jailer No. 1 and Jane Doe Jailer No. 2.
DL says two people tried to rob him with a knife in a restaurant parking lot on Jan. 9, 2011, and he tried to call 911 several times during the attack.
He says when four police officers arrived, they told all the witnesses to leave.
He says he “again dialed 911 due to the complete lack of responsiveness of the officers on the scene in an effort to obtain effective police assistance. Plaintiff was then arrested for telephone/communication harassment,” according to the complaint.
DL says he was booked into Houston City Jail where he “declared” his homosexuality, after reading a sign on the wall instructing prisoners to declare if they are gay so they can be segregated from the general jail population.
“As he was being booked into custody, plaintiff began to be harassed by the jailers and was called a ‘faggot.’ Plaintiff was then placed in an ad seg holding cell as two (2) jailers stood outside the cell and mocked him,” according to the complaint. “Plaintiff continued to be verbally harassed by jailers.
“John Doe Jailer No. 1 (‘Jailer No. 1’) told plaintiff ‘Oh, so you’re the faggot,’ and ‘I will teach you something, faggot.’ Jailer No. 1 is a large Hispanic man weighing over 250 pounds. Jane Doe Jailer No. 2 (‘Jailer No. 2’) is an African-American woman who is of average size and build.
“Jailer No. 1 then opened the cell door and handcuffed plaintiff and took him down the hall and around the corner. Jailer No. 1 told plaintiff that where he was taking him to a place in the jail that did not have video coverage and they would be alone.
“Once in the private portion of the jail where no security cameras maintain surveillance, Jailer No. 1 proceeded to pull down plaintiff’s shorts and underwear. After stripping plaintiff of his clothes Jailer No. 1 hit plaintiff with a black police club in both knees, causing plaintiff to fall to the ground. Jailer No. 2, observing the attack, began laughing at plaintiff.
“After plaintiff fell to the ground, Jailer No. 1 began to kick plaintiff in the ribs while stating, ‘How do you like this, you faggot?’ Plaintiff pleaded for the jailers to stop and called for help to no avail.
“Jailer No. 1 then threatened plaintiff with the club, stating ‘I bet you’d like this up the ass.’ Jailer No. 1 then inserted the police club into plaintiff’s rectum.”
DL says Jailer No. 1 kicked him some more, then pulled him up by his handcuffs and put him in solitary confinement in a urine-soaked cell.
“There was no toilet in the cell and plaintiff’s requests to use the restroom were denied; and plaintiff urinated upon himself as a result. Plaintiff was eventually returned to his original holding cell,” the complaint states.
“A short while after the attack, Jailer No. 1 returned to plaintiff’s holding cell and said that he, Jailer No. 1, did not know plaintiff was a United States armed services veteran and Jailer No. 1 said he would not have assaulted plaintiff if he had known plaintiff was a veteran.”
DL says he suffered “multiple injuries during the attack, including bleeding from the mouth and bruised knees, and injuries from being raped with the police club.”
He says he asked for medical assistance but did not receive any.
“Plaintiff reported to the sergeant on duty that he was raped, and the sergeant informed plaintiff that he didn’t care,” the complaint states.
After being transferred to the Harris County Jail on Jan. 13, 2011, DL says, he was released on personal bond, and he went to the VA Hospital’s emergency room in Houston the next day to get treatment for his injuries.
“On or about January 15, 2011, plaintiff reported the rape and assault to the Houston Police Department Internal Affairs officer. The assigned IAD investigating officer and another officer with that department interviewed [DL] and videotaped the interview,” according to the complaint.
“During that time, [DL] described the attack and completed forms and reports requested by the IAD officers.”
DL adds: “The IAD officers interviewed the accused jailers, who perjured themselves and denied the assault and rape occurred. It is also believed that either the IAD investigation officers or the Harris County District Attorney’s office secured the Houston City Jail videotapes of the booking and of [DL], his time in the holding cells and his transport down the hallways of the jail the day of his assault; however, according to the Harris County District Attorney’s office, certain critical portions of the jail videotape are missing.
“Still, the jail videotape shows [DL] visibly shaken and collapsing in the holding cell once he was taken back there after the assault.
“After additional investigation by the district attorney’s office, Jailers No. 1 and No. 2 were called before a grand jury. On information and belief, the defendant jailers again perjured themselves and denied the attack in front of the grand jury. After reviewing the available evidence, the grand jury declined to no-bill the jurors.”
DL seeks punitive damages for assault, battery, excessive force, due process violations, cruel and unusual punishment, sexual assault, wrongful refusal of medical treatment, conspiracy, false arrest, false imprisonment, abuse of process, intentional infliction of emotional distress, negligence and gross negligence.
He also wants the city ordered to keep all evidence related to his case including statements, videotape, medical records and incident reports.
He is represented by David Van Susteren of Houston.