2 Texas officers cleared after subjecting Black college student to body cavity search, what her lawyer calls ‘rape by cop’
Black bodies have been subjected to egregious violence, most of which have been made public in a new way following the police brutality incidents of the past few years. Such is the case in a disturbing incident in which Houston college student Charneisha Corley was subjected to an excruciating body cavity search in public after two Harris County Deputies suspected marijuana possession.
Per Fox Atlanta, it has been two years since the traffic stop incident and since then, two of the Harris County Deputies involved have been cleared of any criminal charges while a third was never charged. On August 4th, the same day that trial was set to begin, charges were quickly dropped after a grand-jury quickly reviewed what the DA’s office called “new evidence,” of which is supposed to remain “secret”. The deputies remain on the HCSO force and it’s expected they will be released from administrative duty soon.
However, dash cam footage of the traffic stop was recently released, explicitly showing just how disturbing these turn of events are.
“A 21-year-old African-American, female, college student, had never had any criminal history never been in trouble,” said Corley’s attorney, Sam Cammack.
Dash cam images were previously released but as of Monday, August 14, 4:36pm CT, the full video has been released by Cammack, via Houston Chronicle.
“One of the officers on the tape, he was talking to a passenger who was already in custody in the officer’s car and you could hear him telling that individual ‘Oh we are going to find something, even if we have to put our hands on her’,” he continued.
Unfortunately, they did just that. In a traumatic 11 minutes of public searching, Cammack claims that the officers “body-slammed” Corley and pulled off her pants in a Texaco parking lot, which was followed by placing “both ankles behind her ears spread eagle position and started to search for something in Miss Coley’s cavity in her vaginal area.”
In an interview with Fox Houston, Harris County prosecutor Natasha Sinclair weighed in on whether this type of behavior constituted a criminal offense. “No one in this office stands by the search the way it was conducted. No one condones that. No one thinks it’s appropriate. It should not have happened,” she noted. “However bad decisions, bad judgment may not rise the level of a criminal offense.”
“I feel terrible for what happened to Miss Corley. It should never have happened and unfortunately we are in the business of prosecuting criminal offenses and though it may not be criminal, it doesn’t mean she won’t receive justice,” Sinclair continued.
In regards to the dropped charges, Cammack assures, “There has been no new factual evidence to support dismissal of the case.” As such, Cammack will be calling for an independent prosecutor.