Pamela Held says an NYPD officer seized her iPhone after a routine traffic stop led to a drug investigation, stealing racy photos that were meant only for her boyfriend.
Held is now filing suit against the NYPD and officer Sean Christian, accusing them of invading her privacy.
The February 6 stop started out normally. Police pulled over Pamela Held for not having an inspection sticker on her car, then found prescription drugs in the car. Held and a passenger in the Sentra were taken to a police station for questioning.
Police asked where Held had been that night, and she said she was spending time with a friend and had text messages to prove it. She gave one officer the security code to enter her phone.
The officer left the room with her phone while she was booked on a misdemeanor drug charge.
Held said she had a bad feeling about what officers could be doing with her phone, and it appears her fears were founded. She claims officer Christian found racy images and videos she had taken for her boyfriend, sending them to himself instead.
“It makes me sick,” Held told the The New York Daily News. “I don’t even want to think about what he’s done with them.”
After three hours Held was done being processed and Christian walked her to her car.
“He was telling me I’m a beautiful girl and I need to stop hanging out with the wrong people,” Held recalled.
When Pamela Held later checked her phone, she found the officer had sent a message with her racy photos and video attached. In all there were five racy videos and 20 nude pictures.
Held hired lawyer Richard J. Soleymanzadeh, who worked with a private investigator to trace the number on Held’s phone to officer Christian.
Christian is now under an Internal Affairs investigation after Held’s complaint, the paper reported.
Officer Christian said he never met Pamela Held and did not steal the naked pictures from her phone. The NYPD officer claimed the number that appeared on Held’s iPhone belonged to his brother.