3/7/2016 – by Brian Bates — Local media was all abuzz today after high profile Florida attorney Benjamin Crump called a publicity stunt press conference in Oklahoma City to announce the filing of an amended complaint to their federal civil lawsuit originally filed on Feb. 25.
Crump, flanked by attorneys Melvin Hall and Damario Solomon-Simmons, proclaimed the amended information added two additional alleged victims and the revelation of “rather shocking evidence that these families and these survivors were not aware of.”
In short, Crump added plaintiffs Shardayreon Hill and Jannie Ligons to their five original defendants (Tabitha Barnes, Terri Morris, Syrita Bowen, Carla Johnson and Kala Lyles). Crump spent the entirety of the press conference asserting that Shardayreon Hill was not the first alleged rape victim of then OKC police officer Daniel Holtzclaw, “as the Oklahoma City police would have you believe.” Instead, Crump is alleging that the first ‘rape victim’ was Demetria Campbell and that she was allegedly assaulted almost a month-and-a-half before Hill – on Nov. 5, 2013.
Crump then paraded Hill’s mother (LaTonya James-Hayes), Hill herself and accuser Jannie Ligons in front of the news cameras for additional emotional effect.
LaTonya James-Hayes; “As a mother I’m very outraged for the fact that they covered up the sexual assault of Demetria Campbell, and if they would have taken time out to investigate, my daughter would have never been raped, Mrs. Ligons would have never been raped or any of the other rape victims would have never been victimized. I’m very very mad because they lied and said they done everything that they could do to prevent this from happening and they did not do that. They covered up Mrs. Campbell and if they would have did a simple investigation we would not be here today.
Jannie Ligons: “I just feel really betrayed cuz this could have been prevented had they did their job when this happened to the first lady.”
Shardayreon Hill: “I’ve always felt in my heart that I was not the first victim. Now there is proof that there was someone before me. There is no telling how many in between or after.”
Someone apparently forgot to tell Hill the jury acquitted Holtzclaw of all six of her criminal allegations. Meaning… even though Holtzclaw admittedly friended her on Facebook (after allegedly assaulting her), private messaged her, called her on the phone and even went to her home off-duty (and allegedly assaulted her again), the jury found her assertions totally without merit.
Hill was proven a liar on the stand during Holtzclaw’s trial and previously made the following quote that she didn’t realize was being audio recorded and was played for the jury…. “Is this good evidence? Even if he didn’t rape nobody, he’s still getting in contact with people he’s arrested.”
Crump continues the obvious theme of the press conference, that Hill was allegedly not the first victim – how Campbell was and how she identified Holtzclaw as her attacker and that the Oklahoma City police department did nothing and could have prevented the subsequent alleged sexual assaults.
All of that above is pretty much what was reported by all the local media outlets in attendance this afternoon.
HoltzclawTrial.com will now take a closer look and help our visitors read between the lines.
First, so far 11 of the now 14 alleged ‘victims’ of Daniel Holtzclaw have filed civil lawsuits either in state or federal court seeking monetary damages.
Second, amended complaints in state and federal civil court are commonplace and in no way necessitate a press conference.
Third, the absolute only reason a press conference was called was to drive home the theme we’ve already pointed out – that the attorneys representing the plaintiffs want to make it clear that in their opinion the City of Oklahoma City was put on notice of Holtzclaw’s criminal actions and did nothing to prevent the alleged attacks on their growing number of clients.
This is critical.
It’s no accident these attorneys filed their lawsuits in civil court as civil rights abuses. The potential damages that can be awarded in civil rights cases is much higher than in the other cases filed by other accusers in state court.
Additionally, if Crump can prove that the City of Oklahoma City was put on notice and made aware of the danger Holtzclaw presented to the public – yet did nothing – then those damage amounts go even higher… We are talking amounts into the millions of dollars.
That said, despite the show Crump and his minions put on, its not going to be an easy assertion to prove.
According to the Oklahoma City Police Dept., Campbell did indeed report an incident that she alleged to have occurred between her and officer Holtzclaw the night it happened – Nov. 5, 2013.
In fact, Campbell’s complaint was taken in the E.R. of the OU Medical Center by OCPD Lt. Brian Bennett.
However, in her original complaint (on the night of the incident), it is alleged by OCPD Public Information Officer Paco Balderrama that Campbell made no reference to any sexual assault whatsoever. Instead, Campbell allegedly claimed Holtzclaw used excessive force while taking her into investigative detention (she reportedly matched the description of a female in the area involved in a vehicle theft).
Below is a quote from a OKC City Council meeting dated Oct. 13, 2015 (click image for larger version)…
Because Campbell’s original complaint made no mention of a sexual assault, her complaint was never considered as part of the criminal case against Holtzclaw.
Holtzclaw’s personnel file indicates he was investigated for several use of force violations during his three years with the OCPD and was cleared of any wrongdoing in each incident.
Campbell’s use of force complaint was reportedly investigated and “Holtzclaw’s use of force was appropriate and justified” according to the City of Oklahoma City.
Allegedly, it wasn’t until Campbell filed her civil lawsuit in July of 2015 that she revised her initial complaint to include inappropriate sexual contact by Holtzclaw. Specifically that Holtzclaw pushed his erect penis (still inside his uniform pants) against her clothed backside while pushing her against a wall.
Conveniently enough, Campbell’s sexual assault revelation didn’t come about until almost a year after Holtzclaw had been identified on the news as a serial rape suspect.
HoltzclawTrial.com previously reported on the admittedly false sexual assault report filed by Shaneice Barksdale and how her confession and subsequent criminal charges filed against her proved that women were perfectly willingly to frame Holtzclaw for crimes he never committed.
Likewise, I believe Campbell’s revised complaint against Holtzclaw gives credibility to another theory I have believed from the beginning – that Daniel Holtzclaw was a very physical patrol officer who was confident (if not reckless) in his abilities to handle himself on the streets and would not hesitate to use force to apprehend or detain a suspect. Force, that while not criminal, was highly resented by those he came into contact with. So much so that it was not beyond their comprehension and street smarts to retaliate with false accusations of a sexual nature.
Stay tuned to HoltzclawTrial.com as we bring you the details the media totally missed.
KWTV News9 – OKC, Police Sued Over Former Officer Convicted of Rape. (link)
KWTV News 9 – Holtzclaw Victims File Civil Suit Against OKC. (link)
KFOR News Ch4 – Attorneys: Another alleged victim discovered in case of former OKC officer convicted of sex crimes. (link)
KFOR News Ch4 – “I just feel really betrayed,” Holtzclaw victim upset over earlier complaint. (link)
KOCO News Ch5 – OKC, police sued over convicted ex-officer. (link)
KOKH Fox25 – Civil lawsuit filed against Daniel Holtzclaw, City of OKC. (link)
Oklahoman NewsOK.com – OKC, police sued over convicted ex-officer (link)
Associated Press – OKC, police sued over convicted ex-officer (link)
Buzzfeed – 7 Women Sue OKC Over Ex-Cop Convicted of Sex Assault (link)