An Oklahoma City police officer named in a wrongful death lawsuit filed earlier this year has been accused of sexually assaulting women while on duty.
Daniel Holtzclaw, a three-year veteran of the Oklahoma City Police Department, was arrested Thursday afternoon outside Gold’s Gym on charges of rape, forcible oral sodomy, sexual battery, and indecent exposure and jailed on $5 million bond, reported The Oklahoman.
Investigators said Holtzclaw stopped women while on patrol and threatened to arrest them unless they exposed themselves, allowed him to fondle them, or had sex with him.
Police Chief Bill Citty said the case angered and disturbed him, and he praised detectives for their work on the case.
“Trust is something that we are constantly having to work on,” Citty said. “When something like this happens, I have to hope that most of the community realizes that our officers, 99.9 percent of them, are trustworthy, and when something like this happens, our officers take this very personally.”
Six women have already given statements to police in the case, and another woman is scheduled to provide a statement.
Citty said all of the victims were black women between the ages of 34 and 58, and all of the assaults took place between February and June during Holtzclaw’s 4 p.m.-to-2 a.m. shift patrolling the northeastern portion of the city.
Investigators believe there are additional victims.
Detectives opened their investigation after a woman complained to police June 18, and Holtzclaw was placed on administrative leave the same day.
Holtzclaw was one of four Oklahoma City police officers named in a wrongful-death lawsuit filed in January over the 2013 death of Clifton Armstrong.
The 38-year-old Armstrong, who was black, died during a struggle as police tried to restrain him during a drug-fueled attempt to harm himself.
Watch this video report posted online by KFOR-TV: