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Wednesday, August 31, 2011

Know your Constitutional Rights!

The Fourth Amendment guarantees the "right of people to be secure in their persons, houses, papers and effects, against unreasonable searches and seizures . . . ." U.S. Const. amend. IV.A sexual assault by a police officer clearly violates the security interests protected by the Fourth Amendment. Smith v. Ray, 2011 WL 317166, at *7 (4th Cir. 2011); Fontana v. Haskin, 262 F.3d 871, 878-80 (9th Cir. 2001). Thus, an allegation of sexual assault by a law enforcement officer can constitute an unreasonable seizure.

As far as the Fourteenth Amendment, the "liberty" specially protected by the Due Process Clause includes the right to bodily integrity. Washington v. Glucksberg, 521 U.S. 702, 720 (1997); Albright v. Oliver, 510 U.S. 266, 272 (1994)(the protections of substantive due process extend to the right to bodily integrity). It is apparent, from the dissenting opinion of Judge Parker in McClendon v. City of Columbia, 305 F.3d 314, 335 (5th Cir. 2002), that our circuit has recognized for several years the constitutional principle that there is a substantive due process right to be free from state-imposed violations of bodily integrity in cases involving rape and sexual harassment by police officers. Id. at 336. See Jarrell v. Pearl River County Sheriff's Dept., 2009 WL 4928295, at *3 (S.D.Miss. 2009).

Our Law Firm has been representing victims of police abuse of force in Texas. A rape (or sexual assault) by a cop, or a deputy is a violation of the victim's civil rights. Our lawyers will fight for you in court, even when it seems that the whole system will not.

We service the Texas community and we care about your legal needs! If you cannot afford to pay for a lawyer, and you are in an abusive relationship, WE can help!