Univ. of Wyoming Student Sues Albany County Sheriff’s Office
A University of Wyoming student is suing the Albany County Sheriff’s Office, stating that two deputies pressured her to recant a sexual assault allegation against a fellow student.
The federal lawsuit alleges that the two deputies, Christian Handley and Aaron Gallegos, had coerced a recantation of the allegation from the accuser, who regularly interacted with the suspect.
They allegedly told the plaintiff what her feelings were and asserted that the student she was accusing was a “good guy." She says the deputies told her, "You don't want to ruin some guy's life. I mean, you know what I'm saying? Like he was saying, you don't want to ruin this guy's life, do you?"
It also alleges that the department violated federal equal protection laws because the two men had allegedly described the woman as a lesbian in their interview with her, according to the transcript, and were motivated to get her to recant because of it.
The suit further alleges the deputies extracted a coerced confession and that the department had failed to train its deputies.
Attorneys for both the state and the sheriff’s department asked a federal judge to throw out the lawsuit in separate motions.
The judge has yet to rule on the motions.
The deputies say the woman's story is blown out of proportion, while the woman states that although she kissed the suspect and had consensual sex with him originally, the next morning when they had intercourse again, it was not consensual and the suspect held her arms down.