Wednesday, July 27, 2011

Justin Sallis sues after false rape arrest

Just came across this story from last year. It appears that it all took place in 2010.

On March 14th, Justin Sallis had sex with the woman he was dating. The next day she reported to police that she had been raped. The kicker to it, the description she gave, didn't match Mr. Sallis. 

There was DNA recovered, and it matched Sallis. Of course, since they both agree there was consensual sex, this shouldn't be a problem, should it? Think again. Police, in response to her report of rape, never showed her a photo of Justin, nor did they even ask if he was the attacker.

The police presented information to the attorney's office of Ramsey county, who then filed charges of third-degree criminal sexual conduct against Mr. Sallis. There is no information given on how long this took, but during this process, Justin moved to Chicago. On August 17th, six U.S. Marshals arrested him.

The suit states that Mr. Sallis didn't resist arrest, but the marshals beat, tasered and repeatedly kicked Justin in the head. It was bad enough that he lost consciousness and was taken away by an ambulance.

Justin then spent 25 days in jail, the suit claims, in a cell that was only intended for 2 men, but had at least two other men at all times in the cell. He was then extradited to Ramsey County on the 10th of September, where he learned the details of what he was charged with.

It wasn't until the 24th of September, over six months after the initial report of rape, that a member of the public defenders office showed the complainant a photo of Justin. It was at that point that she agreed, Justin wasn't the rapist and that they had had consensual sex around the time she was actually raped by another man.

With this information, and with the complainant reiterating that the man who raped her was much older than Justin, Sallis' lawyer presented the finding in court and the charges were dismissed.

Sallis claims deprivation of liberty and infliction of emotional distress, among other things. The lawsuit names the city, county and the U.S. marshals (who are unnamed), as well as Catherine Pavlak, the lead St. Paul police investigator; Elaine Ashbaugh, the assistant Ramsey County attorney who signed the criminal complaint; St. Paul Police Chief John Harrington; and Ramsey County Attorney Susan Gaertner.