A former police sergeant assigned to the New York City Human Resources Administration will soon start serving a five-year prison sentence for a committing a sexual assault during the course of his duties. However, the city is trying to deflect responsibility despite its zero-tolerance approach to sexual assault. At a time when the #MeToo movement is calling attention to the issue of improper sexual conduct by individuals who abuse their positions of power and authority, some say the city’s attempt to dodge responsibility is outrageous.

In 2017, a Manhattan artist was arrested by the sergeant, who was assigned to the NYC HRA office on 14th Street, for alleged trespassing. The arrest had occurred after the artist became upset when she was notified that a paycheck owed to her was not ready. The sergeant admitted to locking the artist in a room for two hours and returning to find that she had urinated herself. It was at this point that she became a victim of a brutal sexual assault. The sergeant pleaded guilty to the crime.

The case became a high-profile affair investigated by the NYPD and prosecuted by the Manhattan District Attorney, who characterized the sergeant’s abuse of power as egregious. The artist is now seeking compensation for her suffering.

Those who have been falsely arrested and treated unfairly by authorities may want to obtain legal representation. An attorney with experience in criminal defense may hire investigators who can investigate the details of the case. Evidence acquired could be used as a defense for the client.