LEWISVILLE (CBSDFW.COM) – A North Texas teen robbed at gunpoint over the weekend says she was victimized again—this time by police. The 19-year-old claims Lewisville police officers didn’t take her seriously– and instead of searching for the armed suspects, repeatedly accused her of being drunk.
“They treated me like crap,” insists Kayla. “They treated me like I was joking, like I was the person in the wrong.” She has since filed a complaint with the department.
The 19-year-old didn’t want her last name used; but, still trembles as she talks about the house party in Lewisville… and the turn it took toward terror.
“I can still feel the gun on my head,” says Kayla. “In my head, I honestly thought it was a joke… and that could have got me killed.”
On Saturday, Kayla says she became uncomfortable after three guests—two men and a woman—appeared at the house party that no one in attendance seemed to openly acknowledge. The three soon disappeared and Kayla says she told her boyfriend that she was ready to leave. She says she stepped outside to tell another friend goodbye when someone shoved a gun in her back, and another person put another gun to her head. A third armed suspect had several other party guests seated on the ground as they were being robbed of keys, wallets and cell phones. Kayla says the only one she got a glimpse of had a shirt pulled over his head.
“If I scared them and they pulled that trigger, my head would be blown off,” says Kayla, wiping away tears. “I wouldn’t have been able to see my family again.”
After the robbers disappeared around the edge of the house, Kayla says she ran into the house screaming.
“I ran out front to see if I could stop them,” says Joseph. “I was chasing them and they shot a round off in the middle of the street and from there they were gone.”
A neighbor heard the gunfire and phoned police.
“After that gunshot, it was just crazy—pandemonium! They were running through, I guess, trying to get away.” The neighbor didn’t want his name used; but, says he was very concerned—and was surprised that police never came to speak with him.
In spite of giving detailed descriptions of the get-away car and possible suspects, both Joseph and Kayla say the police officers that responded were rude, condescending, and didn’t take them seriously. Kayla says she was bombarded with personal questions and the officers insisted that she was using drugs or drinking. Other guests confirmed that all she drank at the party was water.
Lewisville Police confirmed to CBS 11 News that officers subjected Kayla to a variety of field sobriety tests—and she passed them all.
“I can’t tell you how many times we told them, we got robbed… this is what happened,” says Joseph. “They just thought we were the ones that did it. It was very, very frustrating that they would treat us that way.”
It didn’t help that the party hosts told police that nothing had happened. Neighbors say the family moved out the very next day.
Lewisville police confirmed that robbery reports were filed and have been assigned to a detective. They also say that any complaints will be taken seriously. A department spokesperson told us via email, “We hold our officers to a high standard and are always willing to look into allegation of rudeness or misconduct.” Police officials also tell CBS 11 that officers were in a difficult position because they were getting conflicting witness accounts. “When an officer takes control of a scene, especially the scene of a violent crime, their actions are often seen as rude or uncaring. In actuality, we are just trying to ensure the safety of all involved.”
But, Kayla wants an apology.
“I can’t go to the police for help… and that’s what they’re there for isn’t it? For help? To feel safe. But, I didn’t.”
(©2013 CBS Local Media, a division of CBS Radio Inc. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.)
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