A Black South Carolina couple has settled a lawsuit against four white police officers who they say subjected them to humiliating body searches on the side of a road that left the woman’s breasts exposed and resulted in a search of the man’s anus in broad daylight.
According to a report from the Associated Press, Lakeya Hicks and Elijah Pontoon sued the four officers after a 2014 incident when the couple was pulled over and subjected to a horrific, invasive search on the side of a road. Hicks claimed that a female officer left Hicks’ breasts exposed to passersby while she was detained and searched. Pontoon said police searched inside his anal cavity with their fingers and mistook a hemorrhoid for drugs.
Police reportedly told Pontoon that his “past history” was the reason he was being searched, despite the fact that he has had no drug arrests in recent years.
While there was no video recording of the incident, dashboard audio captured the incident’s brutality. At one moment, when Pontoon accused the officer of harassment, the cop can be heard telling him “you gonna pay for this one boy.”
“I felt very humiliated,” Hicks told the AP. “We don’t want this to happen to anybody else.”