A 28-year-old woman has accused a court marshal of sexually assaulting her during a search in a courthouse witness room - and numerous court employees are accused of covering it up.
Monica Contreras, from Las Vegas, is suing Clark County and its courts, claiming her civil rights were violated when marshal Ron Fox groped her when she attended for a divorce hearing in August 2011.Her two-year-old daughter was with her at the time.
Judge Patricia Donninger is accused of ignoring Contreras when she complained to her about the incident and a video shows Donninger with her back turned to Contreras, acting as if she doesn't hear her. The 28-year-old claims that while they were in witness room, Fox touched her buttocks and breast and ordered her to lift up her shirt.
A later internal investigation by Clark County courts validated her claims.
Multiple employees are now under investigation for covering up the sexual assault. Fox was fired after a six-month investigation, though he denies the claims and is suing for unfair dismissal.
According to internal court documents, he ordered Contreras into a room for an unexplained drug search which he performed even though she asked for a female marshal.The video shows the shocking events unfold in the courtroom after Contreras and Fox returned from the witness room.
After she announced to the court house that he sexually assaulted her, Fox ordered her to be arrested at which point Contreras asks: 'For what sir? Why would I be arrested? Can you please tell me?'
He replies: 'Because of false allegations made against a police officer,' before telling her the only way she can avoid arrest is to recant the accusations.
But Contreras steps up the microphone and states: 'You put me in a room. You asked me to lift up my shirt without a witness.'
Fox then orders her to be taken to jail.
Contreras kisses her daughter before being taken away. The two-year-old was taken to Child Haven.
Speaking to KLASTV, she said: 'I just hope I did the right thing by telling internal affairs. It makes me feel good because now I know that I was right.'
Clark County court administration released a statement reading: 'Court personnel are prohibited from commenting on the video because it's a personnel matter. When the actions of any district court employee are called into question, the court immediately responds by conducting a fair, thorough investigation and, upon completion, taking appropriate action.' LINK
This post was edited on 6/12 at 7:04 am