Civil Liberties

Ohio State Trooper Will Go to Federal Prison for Repeat Sexual Misconduct During Traffic Stops

Family says he's "a good person" who simply "lacked the self-esteem" not to stalk and sexually assault vulnerable women.



A former Ohio state trooper was sentenced to 60 months in federal prison for sexual misconduct with women he pulled over for traffic violations. Officer Bryan D. Lee, 31, was accused of groping and rubbing his genitals against victims while they were handcuffed, stalking some victims on Facebook, and demanding sex and nude photos in exchange for leniency.

Lee's first victim filed a complaint against him back in 2011, but local police didn't believe her. A county prosecutor even offered to charge the woman with making a false statement if Lee wanted; he graciously declined. 

Last October, Lee pled guilty to charges of cyberstalking and "violating the civil rights" of four women. He was sentenced in U.S. District Court on Thursday.

Here's a timeline of his abuses, from the Dayton Daily News

Nov. 19, 2010: Lee responded to a car wreck involving victim "NS," who failed field sobriety tests. Lee turned off his body microphone, groped NS's breasts while she was handcuffed and rubbed his genitals against her. He drove her home and released her to her mother.

Nov. 21, 2010: Lee stopped "KD" for speeding and found she was driving without a valid license and had a warrant for her arrest. He told the male passenger to walk to the nearest rest stop. Lee groped KD's breasts and cited her for traffic offenses but did not charge her for pills and drug paraphernalia found during the stop. Lee later stalked KD on Facebook, demanding naked pictures of her.

March 22, 2012: Lee cited "JE" for speeding and then pulled her over a second time because she was upset and crying. JE sat in Lee's patrol car and allowed him to take a cell phone photo of her topless. Lee convinced her to drive to an abandoned gas station where they had sex. Lee then tore up the speeding ticket. JE and Lee later had a consensual relationship until she discovered on Facebook that Lee was married.

Sept. 8, 2013: Lee flirted with two women on a traffic stop. He turned off his mic, allowed the driver to drive despite showing signs of impairment, and put the passenger, "TF," in his patrol car. He took a photo of him touching TF's breasts and later stalked her on Facebook. A month later, TF was again a passenger during a drunken driving stop by Lee. Lee ticketed the driver for misdemeanor violations and didn't make a drunken driving arrest. TF walked home.

The News also reports that Lee comes from a family of police officers, including two brothers who are also state troopers. Family members wrote the court to insist that Lee "is a good person who lacked the self-esteem, self-discipline and self-awareness necessary to abstain from acting on his sexual compulsions with women that he met in the course and scope of his employment with the Ohio State Highway Patrol."