The attorney for Charnesia Corley charges that she was subjected to a form of rape by two deputies in Harris County after being pulled over for a traffic violation.
The attorney for a black woman subjected to an invasive and lengthy roadside strip search by Texas police has released a dashcam video of the incident that he says shows her treatment was a form of rape, reports The Guardian. “When you stick your fingers in somebody without their effective consent, that’s rape in any state that I know of,” said Sam Cammack, an attorney for Charnesia Corley. Cammack made the video public after two Harris County deputies, Ronaldine Pierre and William Strong, were cleared of official oppression by a grand jury this month. Cammack wants an independent prosecutor to look into the case; a federal civil rights trial is set for January.
Corley was pulled over for allegedly running a stop sign and failing to use turn signals. In the video, she is made to stand, handcuffed, outside her car while two officers look inside. She is then searched with the rear passenger-side door open, partially obscuring the camera’s view of her body. Corley is then put on the ground, naked below the waist, and examined for about 11 minutes by a female officer using a flashlight. The 2015 incident happened in a parking lot when she was a 20-year-old student. “When they’re violating the bodies of black women, I think there’s this perception in society that that’s par for the course, that that’s to be expected and that combines with these profiles of black women as drug couriers, drug concealers, as people who are always hiding drugs in some part of their body,” said Andrea Ritchie, author of “Invisible No No More: Police Violence Against Black Women and Women of Color.”