Female Trooper Faces Sexual Assault Charges After Roadside Cavity Searches
One Texas State Trooper is facing theft charges and another is facing sexual assault charges after an incident in which roadside cavity searches were performed on two women. The two women were stopped for throwing a cigarette out of their car. A grand jury indicted indicted Kelley Helleson on two counts of sexual assault and two counts of official oppression. The searches were recorded by the now former trooper’s dashcam. From CBS DFW:
CBS-11 has learned that one of the troopers, Kelley Helleson, who left the courthouse after testifying Friday, is charged with two counts of sexual assault and two counts of official oppression.
She was seen on dashcam video searching the body cavities — front and back — of the two women along an exit ramp of the Bush Turnpike in Irving last summer.
The Texas Department of Public Safety fired Helleson.
David Farrell, the trooper who made the initial stop, is facing theft charges for allegedly lifting a bottle of prescription painkillers belong to one of the women searched. I don’t know whether or not Farrell has retained counsel, but Helleson’s laywer says his client passed a lie detector test and did not fondle or assault either woman.
Here’s the deal: if this trooper is actually seen on camera performing cavity searches on these two women on the side of a road? She’s all done. She’s already lost her job and will likely have to register as a sex offender for the rest of her life. Texas DPS has already cut her loose and this is what DPS regulations state:
Any search that unreasonably invades the bodily integrity of a citizen is in violation of the Fourth Amendment and is therefore in violation of DPS policy.
I don’t know why this former trooper thought conducting these types of searches on the roadside was permissible or even necessary after a traffic stop for littering. I have no problem with police officers conducting searches on people they encounter as a means of keeping themselves safe, but this is beyond the pale. If she felt that a search like this was necessary, she should have effected an arrest and taken them to jail where, depending on details of the actual search, it may have been permissible. Deciding on your own to perform a search like this on the side of a highway is absolutely ridiculous.