Three undercover Minneapolis police officers whose names were made public after prostitution busts at massage parlors are suing the city, county and state.
The officers, identified as John Does in the lawsuit [but whose real names are Steven Lecy, Christopher Reiter and Abubakar Murid], claim that data on undercover officers is private and the defendants violated the Minnesota Data Practices Act. The lawsuit says the city failed to protect their identities as required by law, and the disclosure compromised the officers’ ability to conduct undercover operations.
“The disclosures of private data identifying Plaintiffs was not inadvertent or accidental, but a willful act,” the lawsuit states.
The lawsuit, filed last week, makes no mention of the massage parlor cases. But Lt. Bob Kroll, head of the police union, and the officers’ attorney, Joseph Kelly, confirmed the connection to The Associated Press on Thursday.
City Attorney Susan Segal said the city received the lawsuit Thursday and was still reviewing it. In an emailed statement, she said the city takes its obligations under the Minnesota Data Practices Act “very seriously.”
The prostitution busts got media attention when they were dismissed this summer by Hennepin County judges and the city attorney’s office, after the judges said the officers went too far when they had sexual contact with the female suspects. [Another word for this is rape.]