Chattanooga Police Officer Charged With Sexual Battery Faces Civil Suit

The Chattanooga police officer charged with sexual battery regarding an incident that occurred as he was working at an off­-the-clock security job is now facing a lawsuit alleging Fourth Amendment rights violations, The Chattanooga Times Free Press reports. Benjamin Dessalines was working a security detail at a Food City grocery store where the plaintiff’s mother was caught shoplifting. The plaintiff alleges that she was held for about five hours before being released, and that Dessalines offered to give her a ride home after a family member was unable to pick her up. Afterwards, she claims that to off-duty officer took her to his apartment saying he was meeting a friend, then touched her "breasts, crotch and inner thighs against her will and without her consent." The suit maintains that the police department "had notice" of at least one other allegation of sexual assault, but that complaint could not be verified.

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