CRIME, POLICE + COURTS

Woman sues West Jordan Police officers, alleging she was wrongfully arrested while naked in hotel room

Dec 29, 2023, 3:00 PM

west jordan police truck, officers are being sued over alleged naked wrongful arrest...

FILE: A West Jordan police vehicle is pictured in West Jordan on Thursday, March 25, 2021. (Steve Griffin/ Deseret News)

(Steve Griffin/ Deseret News)

WEST JORDAN, Utah — Attorneys representing a Utah woman have filed a lawsuit against several West Jordan Police officers, accusing them of wrongfully arresting her and violating her Fourth Amendment rights, all while she was naked from the waist down.

According to the lawsuit, filed in Utah’s Third Judicial District Court, police were called to the MyPlace Hotel in West Jordan around 3:50 a.m. on Sept. 26, 2022. The suit said police were responding to a noise complaint. A caller reported that people in the room next to them had been screaming at each other for hours and that a child may have been involved.

Four West Jordan Police officers arrived at Sheri Meyer’s room at 4 a.m., her attorneys wrote.

The suit continued and said police knocked on the door until Meyer opened the door wearing only a shirt. Meyer asked several times if she could close the door to put pants on, but officers would not let her and two officers put their foot in the door, according to the lawsuit.

Arrest documents obtained by KSL describe the officers as responding to a “domestic in-progress.” The arrest documents said Meyer attempted to close the door before an officer, “placed [their] foot in the doorway to prevent it from closing.”

After several times asking the officers to close the door so she could put on pants, Meyer’s attorneys wrote that police demanded she step out of the room. She refused and said they didn’t have a warrant.

Accusations of violence

Eventually, the conversation escalated to the point Meyer was using expletives and demanding the officers close the door. The lawsuit said she pointed her finger at an officer, but arrest documents from police said she threw a punch at an officer.

The lawsuit said body camera footage from the incident “clearly” disproved this claim of violence. That footage has not yet been made available. KSL has submitted a GRAMA request to review the body camera footage from the night of the arrest.

The lawsuit continued and said officers entered the room and handcuffed Meyer before forcing her onto the bed while she was still naked from the waist down. Arrest documents claimed she resisted arrest and kicked an officer.

According to the suit, police had Meyer’s dog, Riley, who was in the room with her, taken to an animal shelter despite her saying her husband would come to pick the dog up.

Her lawyers said eventually, police took Meyer outside the hotel and put her in a WRAP body suit— a heavy-duty device used to restrain people.

On the way to jail, the lawsuit said Meyer complained the restraints were hurting her and that she had trouble breathing. Her attorneys wrote that she passed out twice on the way to jail, once requiring emergency personnel to respond.

The aftermath

Arresting officers submitted six recommended charges against Meyer to the district attorney. Recommended charges included three counts of assault by a prisoner, which is a third-degree felony, and assault of a peace officer, failure to provide or false information and interfering with an arresting officer, which are all misdemeanors.

Her attorneys said she was in jail for a few hours before getting out on bail. Months later, the state of Utah dropped all charges against her.

West Jordan Police Detective Dirk Petersen told KSL NewsRadio they cannot comment about the case since it is ongoing litigation. He also said they are formally reviewing the case and that they believe their officers acted within procedure and protocol.

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Woman sues West Jordan Police officers, alleging she was wrongfully arrested while naked in hotel room