Accusers Dismissed From Civil Rights Lawsuit Against Former OKC Officer Convicted Of Rape
News 9 - August 11, 2022 7:02 am
OKLAHOMA CITY –
A civil lawsuit against a former Oklahoma City Police Department officer serving a 263-year prison sentence will move forward without four of the alleged victims.
Daniel Holtzclaw was convicted in 2015 of raping women while he was on duty.
Federal court documents indicated seven of the 11 accusers remained part of the civil rights lawsuit against Holtzclaw.
The decision to go to trial was made in March when the women declined an undisclosed settlement offer from the City of Oklahoma City. However, on Tuesday four of the accusers missed a deadline to file reports for the trial and their cases were dismissed.
The convicted man’s sister, Jenny Holtzclaw, reacted Wednesday to the ongoing legal battle.
Holtzclaw said one of the accusers who backed out was also a key witness in her brother’s criminal trial.
“The woman that had the ‘smoking gun’ DNA evidence that the prosecution team used against Daniel,” sister Jenny Holtzclaw said. “So that’s remarkable new evidence. Why is she dropping out of the lawsuit?’”
That DNA evidence was used to convict Holtzclaw of 18 sex crimes, putting him in prison for serial rape. Holtzclaw supporters posted video on YouTube of one of the accusers recanting her original testimony.
“How many times did Holtzclaw touch you inappropriately?” the attorney said.
“He didn’t touch me,” Barnes said.
“He never touched you?” the attorney said.
“No,” Barnes said.
Holtzclaw said Tabitha Barnes’ interview was recorded three years after the trial and is now part of the former police officer’s criminal appeal.
‘The evidence points to his innocence,” said Holtzclaw. “I wouldn’t be fighting for Daniel if I once believed he was guilty of any of the crimes he’s been convicted of.”
Holtzclaw is in an out-of-state prison but will be moved to Oklahoma for the federal lawsuit trial.
The trial will be held in late 2022.