Two sources have informed Seeing Red Nebraska that a number of women employed by the Lincoln Police Department are targets of retaliatory investigations by LPD leadership after the women reported incidents of sexual assault, sexual harassment, and racism by LPD officers. The retaliation spans the tenure of three different Lincoln police chiefs: Jeffrey Bliemeister, Acting Police Chief Brian Jackson, and notably the new Chief Teresa Ewins, who allegedly is using retaliatory and spurious investigations and suspensions to punish every woman who has complained of serious misconduct or criminal behavior.
At this time, we are keeping the identities of the women who have not already gone public anonymous.
Two of the officers have complained publicly about discrimination, assault, harassment, and racism. In 2015 and 2016, Sarah Williams reported acts of racism by officers against the public, as well as sexual assault and harassment against herself, and was forced to quit in 2019 after extensive retaliation. She filed a lawsuit in late 2020. A second, Melissa Ripley, filed a lawsuit this spring alleging gender discrimination by LPD. Our source claims that Ripley has also been subjected to an unclear and retaliatory investigation.
Additionally, the source reports that three other officers have faced retaliation for complaints about sexual harassment and assault within the department and racism against the public.
Officer A, a woman and member of an ethnic minority group, made complaints of excessive force and racism by fellow officers and is now the subject of an unclear investigation.
Officer B, a prominent and public-facing sergeant, filed complaints alleging sexual harassment, sexual assault, and racism by officers against the public, and has now been suspended without pay pending investigation for unclear reasons.
Officer C, also a prominent and public-facing officer with decades of law enforcement experience, was allegedly sexually assaulted by a currently employed police officer. After speaking out about it, she is now also under investigation for unclear reasons.
Among the complaints filed by the women are assault and rape allegations about two LPD officers, each of whom were accused by multiple victims. According to the source familiar with the situation, one of the accused men was allowed to medically retire following paid leave and the other remains active on the police force.
This is an ongoing story and we will update as new details become available.