Victim moves forward with lawsuit claiming city was negligent in stopping abuse

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LINCOLN, Neb. – A woman who was sexually assaulted by a Lincoln Police officer is moving forward with a lawsuit filed against the city of Lincoln.

Former Lincoln Police Officer Gregory Cody was sentenced to 12-16 years in prison for first-degree sexual assault in June.

The woman that Cody repeatedly assaulted originally filed a tort claim in August of 2018, and has decided to push forward with the lawsuit, filing a second amended complaint and jury demand on Wednesday in Federal Court.

The original federal lawsuit was filed in October 2019.

The victim claims from mid 2016 to October 2017, when the assaults occurred, the city of Lincoln was “negligent when they allowed a vulnerable female adult who suffers from a chronic mental illness to be repeatedly subjected to sexual and physical assaults and/or unwelcomed sexual and physical contact by male employee(s),” according to court documents.

The lawsuit alleges the negligence comes from an employee of the Lincoln Police Department taking advantage of the victim while “acting in the scope and course of their employment with the City of Lincoln.”

Court records show Cody released the victim from custody and did not take her into Emergency Protective Custody (EPC) following a situation in July of 2016. Cody used this encounter to "assert his will over her" in the future, according to an affidavit for his arrest.

"She stated that Officer Cody told her that she was "pretty" and that she would "owe him" for not taking her into Emergency Protective Custody during the 2016 incident previously described," the affidavit states.

A number of assaults followed over the next year, and most took place in both his LPD cruiser and personal vehicle.

The lawsuit also claims the victim reported the repeated sexual assaults to the defendant, but that the city “failed to report” the claims in the required manner.

According to the lawsuit, the victim “continued to be sexually and physically assaulted and subjected to unwelcomed sexual and physical contact by the Defendant’s officer(s), official(s), employee(s) and/or agent(s) even after she reported the assaults and contacts to Defendant.”