Police officers in the South Carolina city of Aiken recorded themselves as they exposed an African-American driver’s breasts and searched her partner’s rectum.
The disturbing dashcam video from 2014 shows at least one member of the police Department search inside the man’s rectum for the ‘crime’ of being a passenger in a car with a temporary paper license plate, which is not illegal in South Carolina.
According to the Washington Post, the car belonged to a woman named Lakeya Hicks, who had the paper tags because she had recently purchased the vehicle. The tags had not expired, and a check on her license came up clean.
Instead, the federal lawsuit filed last year, and revealed this week as part of the Post’s investigation, says there were a number of procedural and constitutional failures, saying, “We refuse to create the suspect presumption in this state that every motorist traveling the highways with a temporary tag is guilty of driving an unregistered or uninsured car and is subject to detention until he or she can prove otherwise.”
Passenger Elijah Pontoon was handcuffed and told it was because of his criminal record, even though the lawsuit points out there is no law to justify it.
Just before officers searched the car with a sniffer dog without any probable cause, according to the lawsuit, Officer Chris Medlin referred to him with an old-fashioned racist slur.
“Because of your history, I’ve got a dog coming in here,” Medlin was heard saying. “Gonna walk a dog around the car. You gonna pay for this one, boy.”
Lakeya Hicks, who was then searched off camera, said her breasts were exposed to a busy road and three male police officers.
The cavity search of Pontoon also took place off camera. Audio from the footage suggests nothing was found during the incident yet both people were not let go.
“We search the car. There ain’t nothing in the car… And on a search of him, up in his crotch by the butt, I felt something hard,” Meldin concluded on the radio. “I lifted his pants and pulled the back of his underwear down and I didn’t see anything but I didn’t get all the way up in there to get no vertical up shot. I just pulled his underwear back, but I didn’t see nothing.”