UPDATE: After pleading not guilty on Monday to rape, along with dozens of other charges, New York Police Department detectives Edward Martins and Richard Hall were finally arrested.
It looks like blue privilege won’t stick this time around.
The duo of detectives were accused of raping an 18-year-old. While both claimed the intercourse was consensual, the Brooklyn teenager was detained for possession of marijuana and anti-anxiety pills and later asked what she would do to stay out of prison.
Prosecutor Frank DeGaetano told the court Martins forced the woman to perform oral sex on him before raping her. After the two men took turns raping the victim, they dropped her off near the police station, allegedly telling her to take her pills and to “keep her mouth shut.”
Facing 25 years in prison, the detectives are desperately trying to smear her credibility by pointing to her Instagram account, where the victim allegedly rapped about the case.
Despite their attempts to blame the victim for this horrific case of abuse, the young woman “feels helpless and depressed, and she stays in a room all day,” attorney Michael David said. “She was planning to go to college next semester, but she won’t be doing that anymore.”
So apparently it is not against the law for police officers to have sex with someone in their custody — even if that someone is in handcuffs and cannot possibly provide consent.
This disturbing loophole in the New York penal code came to light when two NYPD officers admitted to having sex with a teenage girl while she was in custody. The officers said it was consensual. However, the young woman called it rape — and the detailed accusation of sexual assault against Brooklyn South narcotics detectives Edward Martins and Richard Halls certainly make it so.
The victim of this particular case, who goes by the social media name of Anna Chambers (she has withheld her legal name), recounted she and two of her male friends were driving near Brighton Beach on Sept. 15 when they were stopped by the two narcotics officers. The cops searched their car and found marijuana and some prescription drugs on one of her friends.
What happened then is proof itself that the cops had no interest in a drug bust.
Martins and Halls let the two boys go but handcuffed Chambers and drove her away in an unmarked van. She was then forced to perform oral sex on both cops and one of the officers also raped her. Having done what they set out to do, the cops ordered Chambers out and drove away.
She was found on the spot by one of her male friends who took her home. She was then rushed to the hospital by her parents where doctors found evidence of sexual assault. According to the New York Post, the DNA found on Chambers also matched the two officers.
When the two men were questioned about the allegations, they readily admitted to the crime, boldly claiming it was consensual — which is an outrageous excuse. They also blamed Chambers saying she had a habit of posting provocative images of herself on social media — which is pretty standard teenage behavior, was not something the cops knew before they raped the woman and is definitely not a reason for sexual assault.
However, the two obviously knew there was no law against sex with handcuffed young women and a month and a half after the incident, have still not been arrested, thanks to this horrific loophole, which lets cops get away with rape.
Under the New York penal code which details sex offenses, prisoners under supervision by corrections workers or patients committed to hospital are incapable of giving consent. However, for the police who have taken a person into custody, there is no such restriction.
Cops can be charged with misusing official authority for personal benefit but nothing in the code explicitly makes the act illegal — which is why Martins and Halls have only been stripped of their badge and guns and given paid desk duty, not some well-deserved jail time.
The woman has now gone public with her accusation and is planning to file a $50 million lawsuit against the NYPD.
New York City Councilman Mark Treyger, who represents the district where the alleged rape occurred, discovered the loophole.
“Obviously, we’re all very disturbed and outraged about what transpired on the night of September 15 in my district. I was also outraged when I read the commentary from the attorney representing the detectives claiming that the sex was consensual. There’s no consent to that,” he said. “That is rape.”
“My office began to research where in the penal code that this is already a crime, and we were shocked to learn, like many, that there is no official law on the books that says that this can’t happen,” Treyger added.
The city can’t change felony rape law but can create a misdemeanor which may be punishable by up to a year in jail. His office is currently in process of making a bill that will make it a misdemeanor if a police officer engaged in sexual activity with a detainee.
Treyger also asserted he would push state officials to amend the felony law.
After the councilman’s office submits the draft, it will be assigned to a committee. After that, there will be a public hearing and the bill will then enter into negotiations with the administration. The committee will vote on it and if it passes, Mayor Bill de Blasio will sign it into law.
Banner / Thumbnail : Reuters/Gary Hershorn