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Woman stripped in cell, now suing

There is shocking video out of Lasalle County, showing deputies stripping the clothes off a woman after her arrest two years ago.

That woman, 28-year-old Zandrea Askew, a former Marine, was booked in the Lasalle County Jail for driving under the influence of drugs.

Askew claimed those deputies violated her civil rights and has filed a lawsuit.

Her attorney, Terry Ekl, said this all started when Ascew asked two simple questions: Why am I here? Why are you doing this to me?

“Apparently the personnel in the jail didn’t like those questions. They started to yell at her and ultimately took her and grabbed her and forcibly pulled her into a cell. It’s called a padded cell,” stated Ekl.

Ekl said officers then slammed her to the ground, ripped off her clothes and threw her on the floor.

Askew’s attorney added this practice is becoming commonplace.

“That it’s okay to strip them if they aren’t doing what you want. If they aren’t answering your questions. If they [detainees] are exercising their fifth amendment rights. Go ahead and strip them,” stated Ekl.

Under Illinois law, strip searches are allowed, if someone is suspected of hiding weapons or drugs.

“This was not a strip search. In a search you are looking for something. This was a strip to humiliate,” said Ekl.

The Lasalle County Adult Detention Facility Policy and Procedure states in part:
“In limited circumstances and as a last resort, a detainee’s clothing may need to be forcibly removed when reasonably related to legitimate penological interests […] Forcible removal of a detainee’s clothing shall never be used maliciously or to punish, humiliate or inflict psychological pain upon the detainee.”

The State’s Attorney reviewed this case and dismissed it after 18 months, saying deputies had no probable cause to arrest Askew.

mmurphy

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