San Antonio taxpayers may have to foot a big bill after a police officer allegedly sexually assaulted a woman following a traffic stop last fall, 1200 WOAI news reports.
A woman who says she was raped by Officer Jackie Neal is suing the city for $10 million. The lawsuit is filed in federal court as a civil rights claim.
In her lawsuit, the woman, who calls herself 'Jane Doe,' claims the police department and Chief William McManus knew that Neal had a propensity for sexual misconduct, but didn't take away his badge, and kept shuffling him around from substation to substation.
McManus told reporters that Neal is charged with sexually assaulting a woman in the back seat of his patrol car following a routine traffic stop on the city's south side. McManus says Neal was in full uniform at the time, including his name badge.
Police say shortly after the assault, Neal was bonded out of jail and appeared at the woman's house.
Neal has been suspended with pay following his arrest.
Police said Neal did have a previous history of inappropriate sexual conduct, including having a sexual relationship with a teenaged Police Explorer.
The woman is suing under the Fourth Amendment, claiming that her rights against unreasonable search and seizure were violated.
Cities like San Antonio have insurance to cover them against lawsuits, but the premiums are paid by taxpayers and are based on claim history, so if the lawsuit is successful, taxpayers will end up indirectly footing the bill.