Suit: Cop searched woman's phone, sent sexual photos to himself - KMSP-TV

Suit: Cop searched woman's phone, sent sexual photos to himself

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CHICAGO (Sun-Times Media Wire) -

A woman filed a lawsuit Friday against the city, claiming a Chicago Police officer who arrested her last June went through her iPhone and forwarded sexual photos of her to his own phone without her consent.

Lemia Britt filed the suit in Cook County Circuit Court, claiming the officer invaded her privacy and violated her constitutional rights when he searched her phone after arresting her for violating an order of protection June 25, 2013.

The officer and the City of Chicago are named as defendants in the suit.

According to the suit, Britt's purse and iPhone were not inventoried as evidence of any kind while she was being held at the Wentworth District police station, and the officer didn't have any reason to believe the phone contained any evidence related to the violation of an order of protection.

The officer told Britt he was keeping her purse and phone safe for her, according to the suit.

The photos the officer allegedly forwarded to is personal phone were in a password-protected file on Britt's iPhone, and they were "of a private and sensitive nature in that they were sexual photos of [Britt]," according to the suit.

The suit claims the officer violated the Illinois Constitution's protections against unreasonable searches, seizures or invasions of privacy.

It also claims the officer violated Britt's constitutional right to equal protection based on sex when he "seized her photos for his own personal use because she was a female and the photos were of a sexual nature."

The five-count suit also holds the city responsible for the officer's actions and seeks an unspecified amount in compensatory and punitive damages.

A spokesperson for the city's law department could not immediately provide comment on the suit Friday night.

--Contact: Atty. Julie O. Herrera, (312) 697-0022.

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