Arizona police sued after illegally arresting naked woman

The woman says she felt 'violated' and 'molested' by the officer.

 

Dell Cameron

IRL

Published Jul 16, 2015   Updated May 28, 2021, 8:26 am CDT

An Arizona woman says she intends to sue after a police officer illegally forced his way into her house and arrested her while she was naked.

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“I felt helpless. I felt violated. And honestly, I felt molested,” said Esmeralda Rossi, who was handcuffed in her home while naked by a Chandler, Arizona, police officer.

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Officials at the Chandler Police Department say officers responded to Rossi’s residence after receiving a call about an alleged argument between Rossi and her estranged husband. “I was in the shower,” Rossi told ABC. “My daughter came to the shower and said there are two officers at the door. So I just grabbed a towel.”

ABC 15

After answering the door Rossi says one of the officers got aggressive, so she asked them to wait while she retrieved her cellphone. After closing the door and taking “about five steps in,” Rossi says she heard boots running after her and someone yelling “stop or I’ll arrest you.”

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In a cellphone video captured by Rossi’s daughter, Officer Doug Rose is seen handcuffing and lecturing Rossi in the family’s kitchen. As Rose grab’s her arm and her towel falls to the floor, Rossi can be heard screaming “don’t touch me” and “What’s wrong with you?” Rose’s partner, Officer David Selvidge, who was later cleared of any wrongdoing, is seen standing a few feet away with his arms across his chest. He reportedly alerted his supervisor about the incident immediately after it happened. 

An internal police investigation later found that Rose had entered the house illegally and without probable cause. It further disclosed that Rose failed to document arresting and un-arresting Rossi. In the middle of the investigation, Rose retired and is reportedly collecting a full pension. No criminal charges were brought against him. 

The cellphone video of Rossi’s arrested filmed by her daughter can be seen below.

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Photo via David Holt/Flickr (CC BY SA 2.0)

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*First Published: Jul 16, 2015, 9:52 pm CDT