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Rialto police officers allegedly participated in group sex at strip club, union hall

August 6, 2010 | 12:43 pm

Rialto A claim filed with the City of Rialto alleges that police officers participated in group sex with female employees of the Spearmint Rhino strip club at  the lounge and at the police union headquarters.

Nancy Holtgreve, an employee at the club, claims in the document that multiple officers engaged in sexual conduct with strip club employees and that one officer used the department’s narcotics office for sexual liaisons during the last two years.

The claim alleges that the behavior “fostered and perpetuated a culture of unwanted sexual harassment of females by male police officers.”

“This sexual behavior happened on duty and off duty. My client has told me more than two officers were involved in the group sex,” Danuta Tuszynska, Holtgreve’s attorney, said in an interview with The Times Friday. “I have [a] picture of an officer exposing himself in his uniform … I don’t know how the chief and bosses couldn’t know about it in such a small department.”

The attorney declined to make her client available for an interview.

At least four officers for the department with a troubled history have been placed on leave in connection with the evolving scandal. 

Police Chief Mark Kling did not return calls or an e-mail seeking comment on the claim, which was first reported by the San Bernardino Sun.

The alleged misconduct began after officers from the department began hanging out in the Spearmint Rhino Lounge, the claim says.

When that practice was curtailed, the officers and women arranged to rendezvous at a nearby Denny’s, Holtgreve alleges in the claim.

Holtgreve, 37, began a sexual relationship with an officer in late 2008 and the officer would take her to the union hall of the Rialto Police Benefit Assn. for sex while on and off duty, according to the $500,000 claim, a required precursor to a lawsuit against a government agency.

“Occasionally several employees of the Rhino and several officers would engage in sexual relations at the union together,” according to the claim.

As a result of the relationship with the officer, Holtgreve became pregnant and had a child last March, according to the claim.

Holtgreve alleges that during the pregnancy, the officer began to “intimidate and threaten” her with calls and texts, stating in one message, “I’m going to make you look like an unfit mother, you ruined my life … I’m a cop,” and “you should have had an abortion.”

According to the claim, the officer also “physically abused” Holtgreve on several occasions.

-- Richard Winton

Photo: City of Rialto

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