Woman sues after Lynnwood police didn’t believe she was raped

MyNNNThe victim of a serial rapist has filed a civil-rights lawsuit against Lynnwood police for violating her rights by discounting her story, ignoring evidence that supported it, and charging her with making a false statement to police when she continued to insist it was true

Our news partner, The Seattle Times, is reporting that iIn August 2008, a stranger broke into the apartment of an 18-year-old Lynnwood woman, gagged her, bound her hands with a shoelace and raped her.

When the woman reported the attack to Lynnwood police, she says detectives Jerry Rittgarn and Sgt. Jeff Mason didn’t believe her. Claiming police coerced her into recanting her story, the woman was charged with false reporting and fined $500 when she later tried to insist the rape did happen.

Read the story here.


  1. Holy wow, Sgt Jeff Mason is extremely incompetent and unprofessional. Well, he was either incompetent or intentionally malicious, bullying a rape victim and treating her as a criminal. He’s lucky she didn’t harm herself when her life fell apart as a result of accusations by Mason and the LPD (she almost lost housing assistance, distanced from family who didn’t believe her story, threatened with an entire in jail, an unimaginable sentence for a teenager).
    And yet NO DISCIPLINE for any of the officers. And this was some serious wrongdoing. Any claim that they were performing their investigations in good faith (of either the rape or the false report) are simply incredible. Mason himself is a flake and a liar who doesn’t seem interested in being a police or doing the actual job. He should be in prison, getting raped. And yet not even a suspension or removal from field duty. This became a nationwide story (the exposé article won a Pulitzer) and it reflects extremely poorly on the community of Lynnwood and its police department. To be frank, it makes Lynwood look like a bunch of backwards hillbillies with an amateurish and corrupt police department (not corrupt in the sense of graft or actively assisting criminals; more like they don’t take the job seriously or care enough to learn and understand investigative principles or criminology). I mean, it’s a job basically any abled person is capable of doing (Newark, NJ used to test applicants to the force to weed out candidates of above average intelligence, who were likely to quit from boredom soon enough that training them would be a waste of departmental funds)

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