MONONGAHELA, Pa. (KDKA) — A woman who claims she was sexually assaulted by a former Monongahela police officer is now suing his old boss and department.
The alleged victim, who has remained anonymous throughout the criminal trial, is now coming forward in a new lawsuit.
The complaint names 25-year-old Jesse Cimino as the plaintiff and alleged victim in this case.
It was filed in a Washington County court on Tuesday against the Monongahela Police Department, former Chief Brian Tempest, former officer Dustin Devault and Union Township — who contracts officers from that municipality.
The complaint alleges Devault used his previous position of power to sexually assault Cimino two years ago.
Cimino claims the two met during a traffic stop and became friends after she revelated to Devault that she wanted to join the police force herself.
Stephanie Wijkstrum, the plaintiff’s attorney, said the two had meetings on multiple occasions where they would discuss police matters.
“They met sometime in the middle of June at the police department. He was showing Jesse various police files on his computer,” said Wijkstrum.
In June 2018, the complaint alleges the former officer exposed himself and groped Cimino multiple times during a police ride-along together.
“He ended up showing up outside her house and stalking her. She was terrified,” Wijkstrum said.
Wijkstrum said Cimino’s life has changed drastically.
She no longer aspires to be an officer and was sent home from Army basic training camp due to her emotional trauma and fear of men because of the alleged incident, the attorney says.
“When these incidents keep happening, you understand why people have fear of the police and are mistrustful of the police,” said Wijkstrum.
According to the victim’s attorney, Cimino has spent the past two years of her life in fear and trying to overcome the emotional trauma of the alleged incident.
Cimino is coming forward now because she doesn’t want other survivors to be scared to come forward with claims of sexual assault.