LPD’s Public Information Officer files sexual assault complaint
PIO Spilker joins two other women filing lawsuits for sexual assault, discrimination, and harassment within the Lincoln Police Department.
LINCOLN, Neb. (KLKN) – Lincoln Police Department’s Public Information Officer, Erin Spilker, has filed a sexual assault complaint against the City of Lincoln alleging years of discrimination, sexual assault, and harassment.
Within the last year, Spilker is the third female officer to file a lawsuit regarding sexual assault and harassment within the Lincoln Police Department.
Spilker alleges that she was sexually assaulted by multiple male Lincoln Police officers.
She alleges an initial sexual assault within LPD during 2014. Spilker was at her home with two male police officers, when one officer left the room, the other approached Spilker from behind and sexually assaulted her.
According to the case documents, “Erin did not want to report this incident for fear of retaliation, ridicule, and trauma that she would have been subjected to within the department.”
At a Halloween party in 2015, Spilker alleges being sexually assaulted by another officer. Again, she did not want to face harassment and discrimination for the report of this incident, the incident went unreported.
In 2017, an additional male officer became frustrated with Spilker, because she would not have sexual relations with him stating that Spilker “owed him” and that she was “a tease.”
The officer later approached Spilker at work and trapped her in a chair where he proceeded to harass her.
Around November 6th, 2020, Sands filed a complaint regarding an officer’s sexual assault of Spilker with the City EEO’s office along with other allegations of misconduct involving the officer.
In addition to the sexual assault, Spilker detailed multiple incidences of harassment and discrimination while at work. Spilker’s co-workers and bosses often made comments about her weight, personal relationships, interactions with co-workers, among other comments.
In a Zoom call with Mayor Lerion Gaylor-Baird and multiple other female police officers, Spilker stated that she would never want her daughter to work for LPD because it isn’t a safe place for women.
In the meeting, it was discussed how women within LPD were groomed not to report Equal Employment Opportunity violations, the LPD has never recognized a female officer as an officer of the year, and a new leader was needed to come set a new tone.
Around March 25th, 2021 LPD signed onto the 30×30 pledge, a movement to change the culture for women in policing.
Around April 14th, 2021 the Lincoln Police Union voted against publicly supporting the 30×30 initiative.
August of 2021, Teresa Ewins was selected as the new LPD Police Chief, Spilker was hopeful that Ewins would bring change to the department. Ewins read Spilker’s and three other female officers’ statements of discrimination regarding sex discrimination or retaliation.
On various occasions, Ewins has been abrupt and unpleasant with Spilker, making Spilker’s job difficult since they work closely.