Trending
MOST READ
SAPD Issues Thousands of Tickets for Homelessness

SAPD Issues Thousands of Tickets for Homelessness

News: Data and records obtained by the Current show that between January 1, 2013, and early October of this year the San Antonio... By Alexa Garcia-Ditta and Elaine Wolff 10/22/2014
6 Sinfully Good Grilled Cheese Sandwiches in SA

6 Sinfully Good Grilled Cheese Sandwiches in SA

Food & Drink: Cheesy Jane’s. Multiple locations, cheesyjanes.com. If the name is any indicator, this San Antonio staple doesn’t mess around when it comes to... By Tommie Ethington 10/22/2014
A Closer Look: The ins and outs of a few important races

A Closer Look: The ins and outs of a few important races

News: For more than a year now gubernatorial candidates Wendy Davis and Greg Abbott have dominated airwaves and secured way... By Mark Reagan 10/22/2014
‘Walking the Camino’ Explores a Treacherous Trek Through Spain

‘Walking the Camino’ Explores a Treacherous Trek Through Spain

Screens: In the Middle Ages, pilgrims walked the 500-mile El Camino de Santiago de Compostela as a pilgrimage to the tomb of Apostle St. James. It was an... By Stephen James Ross 10/22/2014
Failure Is Not an Option: George Lopez returns to SA

Failure Is Not an Option: George Lopez returns to SA

Arts & Culture: It is evident comedian George Lopez is still a little sensitive about the on-again, off-again relationship he’s had with television. Whatever the... By Kiko Martínez 10/22/2014
Calendar

Search hundreds of restaurants in our database.

Search hundreds of clubs in our database.

Follow us on Instagram @sacurrent

Print Email

News

SAPD Officer Accused of Rape Reflects Long Road to Department Reform

Photo: Courtesy photo, License: N/A

Courtesy photo

Jackie Len Neal


On Friday, November 22, San Antonio Police Officer Jackie Len Neal handcuffed a young woman, allegedly placed his hand inside her blouse and began groping her breasts, according to a police report. After pulling the woman over for suspected auto theft (although SAPD has yet to confirm the car was stolen, the San Antonio Express-News reported) the 40-year-old white male then took the woman to the back of his police car and raped her, instructing her not to tell anyone.

This isn’t the first sexual assault accusation Neal has faced—a woman made a similar sexual violation complaint against Neal a few years ago. Because the woman didn’t cooperate in the police investigation, it was dropped and Neal saw no penalty. Along the lines of sexual misconduct, Neal dated an 18-year-old member of the department’s Police Explorer program two years ago. He received a three-day suspension in September but was reportedly transferred to the night shift following the incident. Neal was arrested on charges of felony sexual assault for his latest offense, and eventually released on $20,000 bond.

As an isolated incident, Neal’s case is worrisome but moreover, his dismal track record of alleged and documented sexual misconduct reflects a troubling systemic pattern within SAPD culture. As the Current extensively reported back in 2010, SAPD has received a disturbingly high number of sexual misconduct complaints within a system that is said to be unfriendly to alleged victims and equipped with vague tracking for this type of misconduct and thus, accountability, of these violations—making the accusations against Neal not only a heinous act if proven guilty, but a solemn reminder these widespread, institutional problems likely persist.

SAPD public information officers could not comment on further details of the accusation, as the criminal investigation was ongoing as of press time. In an e-mailed statement, Police Chief William McManus said, “This conduct is unthinkable and I’m absolutely outraged. Once we became aware of the allegation, we took prompt action. A high standard of conduct is a priority of the SAPD. I praise the victim for having the courage to come forward and having the confidence in the SAPD to handle the case effectively.”

However, a community-based evaluation of SAPD policies and practice by the Police Executive Research Forum, released in May 2008, detailed several procedural obstacles for these complainants, including accessibility and transparency. The PERF recommended a series of departmental reforms, including an independent review of SAPD.

“At the time, we were dealing with what I would call, an internal affairs department that was out of control,” University of Texas at San Antonio Professor Mario Salas, part of the San Antonio Coalition for Civil and Human Rights and former PERF member, told the Current. Salas pointed to intimidating complaint report practices, such as a provision stating the alleged victim could be liable for felony perjury when giving a statement of the offense, not receiving a copy of the complaint itself and not being able to bring anyone to the advisory action board hearing with them—for either legal reasons or moral support—one of Salas’ “biggest points of contention,” while studying the issue.

Recently in News
We welcome user discussion on our site, under the following guidelines:

To comment you must first create a profile and sign-in with a verified DISQUS account or social network ID. Sign up here.

Comments in violation of the rules will be denied, and repeat violators will be banned. Please help police the community by flagging offensive comments for our moderators to review. By posting a comment, you agree to our full terms and conditions. Click here to read terms and conditions.
comments powered by Disqus