Dana Holmes sues Illinois police, alleges humiliating strip search

Dana Holmes says four officers illegally strip searched her while in custody. Photo: Surveillance video/CNN

(CNN) - A group of law enforcement officers in Illinois are being sued for their alleged mistreatment of a woman that was arrested on suspicion of DUI this past May.

Dana Holmes alleges that she was degraded, mistreated and stripped during her time in the custody of officers in LaSalle County, which is southwest of Illinois, after she was arrested for driving under the influence.

In surveillance video taken of her arrest, four LaSalle County officers carry the 32-year-old Holmes into a jail cell, place her face down on the ground and strip off her clothes.

"I was terrified...I felt helpless," she said. "I was scared and I lay there crying. I just prayed."

Holmes' attorney, Terry Ekl, says that only officers of the same gender are allowed to strip search an inmate, only after getting permission from a supervisor and only in a secluded area.

Ekl maintains neither of those things happened, while Holmes says she was cooperative and never fought with officers.

"These are on-duty deputy sheriffs humiliating and groping a female inmate," Ekl said.

Police officials told CNN that the department doesn't discuss ongoing investigations.

close video ad
Unmutetoggle ad audio on off