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I-Team: Video missing after woman files complaint against detention center

LAS VEGAS - Staff at the Clark County Detention Center says a glitch is to blame for missing video after a woman filed a formal complaint.

The woman tells the I-Team an officer left her with a bald spot.

The I-Team reported this story last year and now has results from an investigation.

The woman says she was mistreated inside the jail. First, she complained to the Las Vegas Metropolitan Police Department, which runs the jail, and there was an investigation which ultimately was inconclusive.

She took it a step further and complained to the Citizen Review Board which determined there was a policy failure and noted several issues.

After requesting for more than two months, the I-Team obtained video from inside the jail which has no audio. However, jail staff claims there is no video from a handheld camera which an officer is seen using because of technical failure.

The incident with Vera Anderson started when an officer tried removing beads from her hair. 

"I kept telling her hey, you're hurting me, you're hurting me," she said.

The video is from inside the detention center. The I-Team obtained it after requesting it for more than two months.

Anderson says she left the jail with a bald spot where the officer had tried removing beads.

"She said, 'Well, stop acting like an animal.,'" Anderson said. "She was like, 'Oh, you want to play f-ing games?'"

Anderson says she was grabbed by her neck and on the video it appears that a chunk of her hair was removed from her head.

"It's not transparent what they do over there," Anderson said.

The incident occurred in April of 2017 after Anderson was arrested for blocking the entrance to Creech Air Force Base to protest the military use of drones.

She has been arrested before during protests, and she says she was in and out of the jail,
but this time was different.

 "It was very degrading and it's something I never want to go through again."

Anderson complained to Metro.

In its investigation, Metro found that the actions taken by the employees did not rise to the level of misconduct and was not a policy violation.

The Citizen Review Board did decide there was a policy violation because Anderson's property, her beads, were never returned to her. They also found a technical failure wasn't properly addressed because the second camera possibly malfunctioned.

In addition, the board added, since Anderson wasn't going to be in jail for long, the beads didn't have to come out in the first place.

"Hopefully they just, they sharpen up and just have a little more respect you know," Anderson said.

In January, a supervisor at the jail said he has spoken with a captain regarding training for employees about the care of property like the beads. He was also making an effort to correct policy on video equipment and when it malfunctions.

It's still unclear though whether that first officer involved -- who was dealing with Anderson's hair -- faced any disciplinary action.

"I don't want to see her again," Anderson said. I just have no respect for someone like that especially that's her job. I think it's an honor, you know to have that type of position and to misuse it and kind of just brush it off like, oh whatever, it's just another one, that's like, it's sad and it's just disappointing."

Metro did follow up with the I-Team to say they cannot share information because it is a personnel matter.

 


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