38-year-old Angel Dobbs and her niece, 24-year-old Ashley Dobbs, auntie and niece, driving in Dallas, Texas, were unaware that their instinctive act of flicking cigarette stubs out of the car window, would lead to one of the most harrowing and painful nightmare of their lives.
They were pulled up by a Texas state trooper, who saw them flicking the butts out of the window and littering the street. Whilst writing the ticket he said he suspected that the females were in possession of marijuana as the stub smelt of the weed.
Unwilling to heed the women’s pleadings that it was not so, he summoned a female colleague, Kelley Helleson, saying that he needed her, as the occupants of the car were behaving weirdly. Upon arriving she subjected both of them, to what the ladies described as, a “painful and humiliating” cavity search, in which she prodded the insides of their anus and genital areas, without bothering to change the rubber gloves.
She did not seek the women’s permission before inserting her fingers in their private areas, searching for the drugs. Neither did, as she was required to do by law, explain to the women details about what the search would entail its method and its time. Worst, it was done in an area that was well illuminated and in full view of passing vehicles.
Both of them have taken the Texas Department of Public Safety and its director Steven McCraw to court, challenging the validity and viciousness of the searches. The duo has accused the director of being aware of such police misconduct yet doing nothing to address the issue.
The intensive search eventually revealed that the ladies had no marijuana on their possession or in their car, nor where they drunk, both cleared the “sobriety test” that they were made to take.
Angel said incidents like these have to be stopped. She will never forget the pain and humiliation that she had to undergo. She cringes at her helplessness when she powerlessly watched her niece subjected to police molestation. It hurt that I couldn’t protect her, she said.
The ladies say that even though they had not granted their consent to search the car, the officers searched the car. They did not find any drugs, but found some prescription medicine and made enquires about them. Dobbs says that her anal search disturbed an anal cyst, causing her immense pain.
The ladies have alleged in their lawsuit that the troopers took away a bottle of their prescribed medication.
The family’s attorney said that what the troopers did was far outside what they were legally allowed to do. He said that both Farrell and Helleson exhibited an irresponsible and insensitive disrespect for these women’s constitutional rights and their wellbeing.
He wondered how many more people must have been subjected to such abuse and humiliation. He appealed to affected people to come forward and share their experiences.
Unfortunately for the female troopers, her act of searching their private parts was caught on camera and she has since been suspended. The video, taken from another vehicle, confirms the duo’s allegation that she had explored the insides of their private parts, as it clearly shows Helleson pushing her hands down the front and back of their trousers.
Attorney Charles Soechting Jr. said that the initial charge of littering was a Class C offense and could not justify even a pat down. An invasive search of the cavities of the woman was just unwarranted and uncalled for, he clarified.Female Duo Subjected To Inappropriate Cavity Search: Camera Catches Troopers Probing Women’s Private Parts by Harrison Barnes