On December 31, 2009, 20 year-old Jessica Mejia was killed when her drunk boyfriend Nicholas Sord lost control of their car and crashed into a utility pole.
A new lawsuit filed by Jessica’s mother is now accusing the sheriff’s deputy of taking inappropriate, nude photos of Jessica’s body on the side of the road. The cops have been accused of inappropriately removing Jessica’s clothing before taking the pictures.
Even though Jessica had been wearing a t-shirt, jeans and high healed shoes, her body was photographed wearing just her underwear.
“This was a young lady that just died and was treated with less dignity than a deer carcass you find on the side of the road,” said the Mejia family attorney Don Perry, according to Daily Mail.
Christina Mejia said that the photos of her daughter left her feeling “violated,” and that they created rumors that Jessica was having sexual intercourse with Sord when they crashed.
“(People) think my daughter died from having sex, not from somebody being drunk and killing her,” the heartbroken mother told the press. “By the time everybody else got to the scene… she was partially naked because they made her naked. So the rumors, and the allegations… they made it believable.”
The sheriff’s office has denied any wrongdoing, saying that the pictures were “standard operating procedure” and that they were only trying to get evidence to convict Sord.
“The family suffered an unimaginable loss, and the crime scene photos were taken as our officers investigated this crime and were instrumental in securing a conviction against the person responsible for this tragic death,” spokeswoman Cara Smith said. “In no way were these photos intended to cause harm to the family.”
Sord’s blood alcohol level was .236% at the time of the crash, and he is currently serving 56 months in prison. Jessica had broken up with him months before her death, and was studying psychology at the University of Illinois in Chicago at the time.