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Friday, November 11, 2011

Woman Who Claimed Improper Strip Search Gets $90k

Woman who claims cop forced her to strip during improper search gets $90K
The New Daily News by John Marzulli - November 11, 2011

Detective allegedly photographed below-the-navel tattoo with cellphone

NYPD Det.Charles Derosalis, accused of improperly searching a 25-year-old woman. A Brooklyn woman who says an NYPD detective forced her to strip so he could photograph her below-the-navel tattoo will receive $90,000 to settle a federal lawsuit, the Daily News has learned. Claudia Bova, 25, was subjected to what she says was an improper body search by Det. Charles Derosalia after she was arrested in a Coney Island drug sweep in 2007. Derosalia told her there were no female cops available and that he had to photograph the tattoo with his cellphone camera for “identification purposes,” according to court papers. The photos were not recovered. After Bova filed a complaint, NYPD Internal Affairs Bureau investigators found 17 women who also claimed they had been strip-searched by Derosalia, who was assigned to the Narcotics Borough Brooklyn South. Bova's lawyer, Nicole Bellina, said that two other women besides her client testified about the improper searches at Derosalia's department hearing. NYPD regulations prohibit male cops from performing strip searches of female prisoners. Derosalia was found guilty and the recommended penalty is dismissal from the force, Bellina said. “Detective Derosalia victimized women who were in his custody and control,” Bellina said. “He victimized them in police precincts, right under the noses of his supervisors.” Under the settlement, the city will pay Bova $75,000 and Derosalia must fork over $15,000. “We feel that Det. Derosalia is appropriately contributing personally to this settlement and that it is in the best interest of all the parties,” city lawyer Brian Farrar said Thursday. Last year, the city paid $27,000 and Derosalia $1,000 to Quantalis Legrand, who claimed she was forced to disrobe in front of him so he could check for contraband. Detectives Endowment Association lawyer James Moschella did not return a call for comment.

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