McAllen, Texas – In May of 2014, a woman was raped in her jail cell for hours by police dispatcher, Felipe Santiago Peralez, all of which was caught on camera, according to reports. After the footage was reviewed by multiple officers, including Peralez’s superiors, the woman was not taken to a hospital for a mandatory rape examination, but they did offer her a taco. Peralez was eventually charged and convicted in 2015, and now the victim has filed a lawsuit.
Due to, not only the atrocious actions of the offending officer, but his colleagues as well, the whole story plays out like a terrible movie script, and were it not for the numerous widespread reports on the incident, the first of which was published by Courthouse News Service, some would find it unbelievable. While the female victim, known only as A.R., was in custody at the La Joya City Jail, officer Peralez entered her cell and assaulted her throughout the night.
According to the 38-page complaint, “Peralez began an all-night invasion of the plaintiff’s body, by inserting his fingers, hands, and other objects into her buttocks and vaginal areas of plaintiff’s body.” It is apparently clear from the video that the sex was not consensual as the victim had cried out in pain, and can be seen being forced to participate in other sexual acts.
After telling two female officers about the assault—one of which later warned her to “forget about” it because “people come up missing all the time…”—and after several other officers saw the video footage, A.R. was offered a taco before her request for medical attention was declined.
Quite a few higher ranking officers ended up finding out about the incident as well, and even watched the video themselves, but still did nothing. It wasn’t until Texas Ranger Robert Garcia learned about the assault that Officer Peralez was finally arrested after a lengthy investigation.
A.R. is now seeking “$70 million in compensatory and punitive damages for violations of the Eighth and 14th Amendments, the Prison Rape Elimination Act, bad faith and infliction of emotional distress,” as reported by Courthouse News Service.