Suit filed against former Waverly police officer

By Gary Scott on May 1, 2015 at 8:43am

A civil lawsuit has been filed against a former Waverly police officer who was convicted of sexually assaulting a 16-year-old girl in 2013.

The lawsuit was filed in Morgan County Court on Tuesday against Jeremy Angelo, who pleaded guilty last August and was sentenced to four years in the Illinois Department of Corrections.

The lawsuit also names as defendants the City of Waverly, former police chief Dave Searcy, who has since retired, and assistant chief Jason Divjak on behalf of the victim, who is now 19 years old.

Angelo is accused of having sex with the girl while on duty in the back room of the Waverly Police Department on March 14th. He was found with the girl by Divjak and resigned that night.

Divjak called Searcy after discovering the two, and Angelo was arrested several days later.

The Jacksonville Journal-Courier is reporting the details of the lawsuit, which allege Angelo had dozens of contacts with the girl when she was as young as 15, including asking where she was going after classes would end at Waverly High School.

She also claims he sent her Facebook messages and made her ride in the front seat of his cruiser.

The suit, which only represents one side of the claim, says the night of the assault, Angelo asked the girl to come to the back of the station because he had some paperwork to give to a family member who had been involved in an accident.

It claims the girl was forced to walk home after she had had sex with Angelo, about a mile and a half distance, alone at night.

It contends Angelo “had numerous inappropriate flirtations or sexual relationships with other minor female residents of Waverly”, something it says should have been reported by the Waverly Police Department.

The suit claims the girl’s Fourth Amendment rights were also violated, that the City of Waverly intentionally inflicted emotional distress for failing to protect her against Angelo, and that Waverly police failed to handle the previous alleged misconduct incidents.

Although she’s named in the lawsuit, the victim is not being named by our media outlet because she is the victim of a sexual assault.

The city newspaper’s report indicates the girl, as a result of the assault, has suffered humiliation, physical and emotional pain and will continue to need treatment for those injuries.

The lawsuit is seeking damages, but they’re not specified.