A Michigan mother is suing a local police officer after she discovered he had been watching her while she nursed her baby.
According to the lawsuit, 28-year-old Megan Pearce was nude while breastfeeding her baby when she noticed the green light on their video baby monitor flashing. The only three devices with access to the camera were her iPhone, her iPad and her fiance’s cell-phone.
Pearce’s fiancé, Cody Fuhrman, was in jail serving time for a marijuana charge at the time, The Daily Beast reports.
The quick-thinking mother used the “Find my iPhone” feature for her fiancés phone and learned its location matched the home of local police officer, Michael Emmi.
Pearce’s attorney, Jonathan Marko, very accurately described the officer’s actions as “a huge breach of the public trust.”
Court papers reportedly indicate that on the day of Fuhrman’s arrest, his phone was seized and logged into evidence at the crime lab; however, the “Find My iPhone” tracking results indicate it was either taken from evidence or never made it there.
“Someone was violating the sanctity and privacy of her home and watching her nurse her son in the nude,” Pearce’s complaint alleges. “The only other device that could access that camera at the time was Cody Fuhrman’s iPhone.”
Pearce is following through with her lawsuit because she feels this course of action is “absolutely necessary to prevent this from happening to any future individuals;” however, the Detroit Free Press reports that the police chief said the department does not plan to investigate Emmi, who he described as an “exemplary” officer.
“I seriously have my doubts if these allegations are true,” Chief Martin Barner said. “How does she know where my officer lived? There are a lot of gray areas here. What is she doing cohabitating with a felon? Maybe she’s got a bigger issue than my officer. There’s a lot more to this than ‘oh, this police officer was spying on me while I was naked.’ Seriously?”
Pearce reportedly works as a dispatcher for the Warren police department, so she may have had some connections through work to find the address she discovered through “Find My iPhone” belonged to Emmi but no details on that have been reported.
The lawsuit, filed in U.S. District Court, accuses Emmi of violating the Fourth Amendment, federal wiretapping laws, and state laws on invasion of privacy and eavesdropping, according to The Daily Beast. The amount sought in damages is unspecified.
The accusations against Emmi are very serious and it’s disturbing that the police chief would nonchalantly brush off these claims and stoop to victim-blaming by questioning why Pearce is “cohabitating with a felon.”
If Pearce’s claims are found to be true, it certainly wouldn’t be the first time a “respected” officer did something perverse, abused his power, broke the law, or violated a civilian’s rights.
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