Rape victim suing North Carolina town for hiring sexual predator to police force
The family of a 13-year-old girl who was raped by a local police officer is suing the town they say hired the man without conducting an adequate background check. A proper investigation, they claim, would show that he raped another girl two years earlier.
Jaymin Lenwood Murphy was sentenced in 2010 to 41 years in
prison for sexual offenses against both girls. He was previously
charged with the first-degree rape of a child and sexual battery,
among other counts, according to North Carolina's Wilmington
The suit alleges that in 2005, Murphy “began engaging in sexual intercourse with his then-live-in-girlfriend’s 11-year-old daughter,” according to Courthouse News. Employed as a cab driver at the time, he raped the girl multiple times before moving out two years later in 2007. He was hired by the Navassa Police Department the following year.
“Within 16 months, Officer Murphy was raping another child, this time while on-duty, in the course and scope of his duties as a Navassa Police Officer,” the suit continues.
The charges describe in shocking detail how Murphy took
advantage of the child.
“In December of 2009, Officer Murphy was assigned by the
Navassa Police Department to investigate accusations that the
boyfriend of the [plaintiff] minor child’s aunt had sent
inappropriate pictures to the minor child. Officer Murphy visited
the minor child, then 13 years old, at her grandmother’s home in
Navassa, in his squad car, in uniform, and demanded the family
allow him to question the minor child in private, in a bedroom.
Behind the bedroom’s closed door, Officer Murphy told the minor
child that ‘investigators required photos of her to compare the
images sent to her cell phone.’ Officer Murphy then instructed the
minor child to remove her clothing so he could take pictures of her
genitals and breasts, and then, when the minor child complied under
coercion, he did so.”
Then, on the girl’s fourteenth birthday, Murphy again visited
the home and told the girl he needed to “conduct a pressure”
test to see if she had been sexually active. After raping her he
“threatened her mother and herself with jail,” so she
“was too terrified and traumatized by her rape to report it to
The complaint alleges that those responsible for hiring Murphy
failed to conduct any psychological testing on a man who had
already raped a child, thereby failing to achieve even the minimum
entry requirements mandated by the state of North Carolina.
It continues, claiming, “That due to the failure of the Town
of Navassa to adequately supervise Officer Jaymin Lenwood Murphy
and his ‘investigation’ activities, he was able to have repeated,
unfettered contact with the minor child and her family – a perfect
environment for Officer Murphy to intimidate the grandmother and
mother of the minor child and sexually abuse the minor
Court-appointed guardian James W. McGee filed the lawsuit
against Mayor Eulis A. Willis, the Navassa Police Department and
former Police Chief Copelen L. Taylor. The family is seeking
compensatory and punitive damages for negligent hiring, supervision
and retention. Only the second victim was named as a
Murphy was first arrested and charged in connection with the
2006 rape. It wasn’t until the second victim saw that story
broadcast on the local news and came forward to tell her story that
Murphy was charged with additional counts of sexual abuse. Because
Murphy pled guilty to the charges, neither victim had to testify in
2010 in court. He will be 67 years old before he has a chance for