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Former NOPD officer accused of sexual assault and rape of 14-year-old girl

Updated: Feb. 25, 2021 at 9:42 PM CST
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NEW ORLEANS (WVUE) - A mother is suing a former New Orleans police officer accusing him of sexually assaulting and raping her 14-year old-daughter last year. The NOPD is also listed on the lawsuit alleging failure to follow policy, among other accusations.

Former NOPD officer Rodney Vicknair is accused of sexual assault and rape. The mother of the victim alleging the NOPD did nothing after her first complaint on the former officer, and accusing the NOPD of taking action after her daughter was raped a second time by Vicknair.

In a statement provided by the NOPD, “Former NOPD Rodney Vicknair was arrested at his home in St. Tammany Parish in September after an internal investigation resulted in a warrant being issued for his arrest. At that time, he was placed on immediate emergency suspension and was separated from the New Orleans Police Department on January 13, 2021. NOPD has also contacted the FBI regarding potential civil rights violations.”

“As I stated from the moment this was brought to my attention, this type of behavior will not be tolerated,” NOPD Superintendent Shaun Ferguson said. “These actions violate the basic trust citizens should never have to worry about with their police department.”

The victim’s attorney Hope Phelps said Vicknair was allegedly dispatched to the victim’s home after an alleged rape in May 2020 when the victim was 14-years-old.

The lawsuit states Vicknair transported the teen to Children’s Hospital for a rape kit.

The lawsuit goes on to accuse Vicknair of “grooming” the girl, and over the course of several months, he allegedly visited the girl several times and accused of sexually assaulting her and raping her at least twice.

“What has happened to them is so traumatizing, the cost of counseling and piecing your life back together after something like this, you know your trust in police officers, and medical care providers and anyone in a position of authority is broken. That’s very damaging especially at this young age,” said Phelps.

The lawsuit details other complaints made by women on the former officer. One example listed in the lawsuit claims a woman reported Vicknair saying he looked up her license plate number while she was in the grocery store, and when she was done shopping, the woman claims Vicknair summoned her to his vehicle.

The lawsuit is alleging civil rights violations following the alleged rape of the child, including false imprisonment, assault and battery, and several other federal claims.

Again, the NOPD has contacted the FBI regarding these potential civil rights violations.

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