Police Sexual Harassment

No industry is safe from sexual harassment. Many forms of inappropriate sexual behaviors and actions exist in workplaces throughout California – including police departments. Sexual harassment in policing can refer to supervisor-employee harassment, coworker-coworker harassment or officer-civilian sexual harassment. All variations of sexual harassment within any relationship in law enforcement are against the law in California. If you or a loved one has experienced police sexual harassment, contact a qualified California sexual harassment attorney for a free legal consultation immediately.

Sexual Harassment In Policing

Sexual harassment in policing is a particularly heinous and deplorable offense. Police officers are the very professionals charged with ensuring your safety. When an officer or someone in power in law enforcement subjects you to sexual harassment, abuse or discrimination, you may not know where to turn for help. Reporting the incident to the police may seem counterintuitive since the perpetrator is part of the police force. Luckily, sexual harassment attorneys are available to offer counsel and assistance in the face of sexual harassment and misconduct in policing.

Contacting an attorney could give you an ally in the fight against police sexual harassment. An attorney can work with you to identify this offense and take a stand against a perpetrator. Whether you are in the police force yourself and experienced harassment as an employee or you were a civilian at the time of the incident, you may have grounds for a case against the offender. A lawyer can stand by your side during all phases of the claims process, explaining and protecting your rights.

What Is Considered Sexual Harassment By Police?

The law in California holds professionals in law enforcement to the same legal standards as civilians. A position of power as a police officer does not allow the individual to sexually harass, discriminate, assault or abuse others – including those pulled over, detained or arrested. Sexual harassment by police officers can take many forms. The conduct in question must be unwelcomed to qualify as sexual harassment. Contact an attorney if you are unsure whether your experience constitutes police sexual harassment.

• Any unwanted sexually-oriented conduct
• Circulating sexually explicit images around the office
• Persistently asking for dates
• Sexual comments, looks or gestures at work
• Workplace discrimination based on sex or gender
• Coercive conversations with an officer
• Promises or threats contingent upon the fulfillment of sexual requests
• Physical sexual assault during a traffic stop
• Rape or attempted rape
• Sex, even consensual, between an officer and a detainee

Two forms of workplace sexual harassment in California are quid pro quo and hostile work environment. Quid pro quo harassment, or this for that, describes a scenario in which someone in law enforcement offers something of value in exchange for sexual favors. Alluding to dropping charges for sexual favors, for example, is quid pro quo sexual harassment. A hostile work environment is one with severe or consistent enough sexual harassment to make it feel intimidating or unproductive for a worker. Both types of sexual harassment are against the law in California.

Police Sexual Harassment Statistics

Police sexual harassment happens more often than most people think. Police harassment of coworkers and civilians pervades California and all other states. One study on police sexual misconduct found 548 cases of police officers arrested for committing sex crimes during a two-year period across 43 states and the District of Columbia. Out of these officers, 66 were repeat offenders. Almost all (99.1%) arrested officers were male.

Statistics on police sexual harassment are limited and difficult to find. Furthermore, they only represent the officers turned in and arrested – not the hundreds of others who commit sexual harassment without any consequences. Despite being a gross violation of civilians’ constitutional rights, many police officers get away with sexual harassment due to a lack of reporting and a lack of disciplinary action when reported. Speak out if you have experienced police sexual harassment. Your story could make a difference for someone else.

Police Misconduct Law

Police sexual harassment is just one example of many types of police misconduct. Police misconduct can refer to any abuse of power by someone in law enforcement, generally against a civilian. Any time an officer abuses his or her position of power to harm a civilian or interfere with evidence, it is police misconduct. Police misconduct can lead to disciplinary action against the offending officer when properly reported and investigated.

  • Physical assault
  • Lewd sexual actions or behaviors
  • Illegal search and seizure
  • Cruel and unusual punishments
  • Unlawful detention
  • Excessive use of force
  • Causing a suspect deliberate harm
  • Racial profiling
  • Racist or homophobic comments or actions
  • Illegal surveillance (spying)
  • Police conspiracy/filing false reports
  • Misappropriated seized drugs or goods

Police misconduct is ongoing despite several state and federal laws that aim to address this type of wrongdoing. The U.S. Department of Justice, for example, enforces several laws against police misconduct and sexual harassment. These include Title VI of the Civil Rights Act, the Office of Justice Programs Statute, Title II of the Americans With Disabilities Act and Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act. A sexual harassment attorney in California can explain the laws that may apply to your case as well as the rights they may give you.

Sexual Harassment In The Police Force

Sexual harassment offenses do not only occur between police officers and civilians. It is also a pervasive problem within the police force. Unwanted sexual touching, requests for sexual favors, threats or blackmail involving sexual acts, sexual assault, and discrimination based on sex are examples of offenses that can occur at work in law enforcement. If you experienced any form of sexual harassment or discrimination while on the job as a police officer, either from a superior, coworker or someone else, discuss your legal rights with an attorney.

Schedule A Free Consultation With A Sexual Harassment Lawyer

It is important to talk to a police sexual harassment attorney in California if you believe you have been the victim of this offense. The right sexual harassment lawyer in California can explain your rights, investigate your case, and help you go up against one or more parties in law enforcement during a claim. At Manly, Stewart & Finaldi, our sexual harassment lawyers understand this practice area and know how to fight for justice for clients. Do not hesitate to contact us if you think you have a case. We offer free and 100% confidential initial consultations. Call (855) 397-3146 to speak directly to an attorney today.