PITTSBURGH - A woman is now suing the City of Pittsburgh as well as three high-level officers in Federal Court after she was raped by a police officer hired by them despite his record of sexually abusing multiple women, according to lawsuit documents.
Courthouse News reports that officer Adam Skweres pleaded guilty in March of 2013 to 26 charges involving five women.
According to the lawsuit, Skweres was hired by the department, given a loaded pistol, and allowed to approach women alone, despite his documented sexual misconduct.
The results of a psychological evaluation also revealed that Sweres was “unsuitable” for police work, and several women had complained that Skweres forced them into sex acts, but he was kept in the department anyway.
The consequence? He sexually abused another woman, forcing her into sex as he “gestured toward his handgun.”
Skweres was “in uniform – carrying a firearm” when he “displayed his badge of authority and unlawfully entered” the woman’s home, according to the lawsuit.
“Skweres arrived unannounced at plaintiff’s home armed and in full uniform. He propositioned plaintiff, offering to help her incarcerated boyfriend in exchange for sex. When she told him to leave her home, he refused and gestured toward his handgun. When plaintiff continued to resist, Skweres physically forced plaintiff to perform a sex act on him.”
The woman reported the crime to the FBI the next day.
After the FBI became involved, Skweres was finally arrested and criminally charged with official oppression, indecent assault, rape and criminal coercion.
Meanwhile, the woman lives with the trauma of a rape that could have been prevented if the department hadn’t kept the rapist hired.
The woman who filed the lawsuit is one of five women whom Skweres pleaded guilty to sexually abusing.
The psychological evaluation that determined Skweres “unsuitable for police work” was administered all the way back in 2005.
But he was admitted into the police academy anyway and given a loaded gun.
In under a year and a half of being an officer, multiple women began filing complaints reporting that Skweres either attempted or succeeded in forcing them into sexual acts.
Skweres was still hired by the department despite the complaints.
Then three more official complaints were filed. But the department kept him anyway and didn’t mitigate his interaction with women, according to the report.
“Skweres was allowed to continue performing regular patrol duties which involved interaction with female citizens, with no precautions taken to prevent him from abusing his police powers to sexually abuse other women.”
After nearly a decade of a rapist being armed and protected by a department that allowed him to approach women alone, the latest victim finally reported him to the FBI.
Many are left asking: were there other victims besides the five women who came forward? Were some of them murdered or otherwise silenced? It is not yet known.
The woman suing is seeking “medical expenses and punitive damages for constitutional violations, failure to supervise, emotional distress and other charges,” according to Courthouse News.
After pleading guilty to 26 charges, the officer may get as little as 3½ years behind bars, after which he will be released.