NASHVILLE (CN) – A young mother claims she miscarried her second child after she was raped by a state employee as she sought health insurance in his hospital office. She claims the Tennessee Department of Human Services worker, Darius Willis, moonlights as a male stripper under the name “Chocolate Thunder,” and that “other male DHS employees have secondary careers as male strippers and strip together.” Willis has been criminally charged with rape, the young mom says in her federal complaint.
The plaintiff, J.N., sued Willis and the Tennessee DHS, which she says was negligent in its hiring and supervision of Willis, and in putting him in a position of power over women in crisis.
J.N. says she receives state benefits for her daughter, including health insurance through the state-run TennCare.
She says she made an appointment to meet Willis in his office at Vanderbilt Hospital to correct the birth date in her daughter’s insurance file.
When she entered Willis’ office and took a seat, she says, Willis “locked the door and pulled a rolling chair up to her to prevent her from leaving.”
“He asked her if there was ‘anything you would do for food stamps. … ‘I am easy to persuade,'” the complaint states. “Whereupon, Willis pushed himself next to the plaintiff, pulled down her pants and physically and sexually assaulted and raped the plaintiff, orally and digitally.”
J.N. says she “objected, and tried to scream, but Willis said, ‘Don’t worry, it’s a soundproof room.’ Then Willis masturbated. After masturbating, he said, ‘I didn’t do nothing, right?'”
She adds that while she was “detained and unable to leave … Willis suggested he would approve the plaintiff for state benefits in exchange for sexual favors.”
J.N. says she reported the assault to police, and that while she was being examined at a hospital, Willis called her on her cell phone, admitted the assault, and told her to come back the next day to apply for food stamps. She says she did so, after being wired by police. At their second meeting, she says, Willis admitted again that he assaulted her. The next day, she says, “Willis was arrested by police and charged and indicted for rape. The criminal charges are still pending.”
She adds that she “miscarried her unborn child shortly after the assault.”
She seeks damages for assault, rape, physical and emotional injuries, medical expenses, pain and suffering, and negligence. She is represented by David Lyons and Martha Child of Nashville.