MIAMI, FL— October 20, 2011 – A woman who was raped by an ex-Miami Police officer in March 2007 and went on to file a lawsuit against the city is expected to receive a settlement payment of $500,000, following the unanimous approval of city commissioners. According to information provided by the Miami Herald, the plaintiff, who was employed as a South Beach waitress at the time of her attack, sued on the grounds that the Miami Police Department hired Michael Ragusa “despite the obvious red flags concerning his qualifications to be a police officer.”
Upon filing an application with the MPD, not only did Michael Ragusa admit to stealing money from a restaurant that he employed him in the past, he confessed to soliciting prostitutes and paying strippers to have sex with him, according to the lawsuit. Ragusa, who was once a boxer and weightlifter, also allegedly confessed to having a short temper.
The lawsuit further claims that while six addition police departments and agencies denied him a job, the Miami Police Dept. “engaged in only the most cursory scrutiny of his background history” and went on to hire him in March 2004.
In March 2007, Ragusa went on a rape binge of sorts. In a matter of weeks, the ex-cop sexually assaulted three women, including the unidentified plaintiff who was en route to her home from a Miami Beach bus stop when she was raped. Although Ragusa’s last rape victim convinced him she had an STD so he wouldn’t rape her, the uniformed police officer went on to demand that she give him her phone number nonetheless.
The third victim seemingly contacted Miami Beach Police officials upon receiving a text message from her. He was apprehended on multiple rape charges in March 2007. The following year, he pleaded guilty to various felony charges of that nature was sentenced to 10 years in prison. When Ragusa is released from prison, he will be regarded as a “sexual predator” and spend an additional 10 years on probation.
About the Miami Sexual Assault Lawyers and Personal Injury Attorneys of Gerson & Schwartz, P.A.
Working closely with advocacy groups such as the National Center for Victims of Crime (NCVC), the Miami sexual assault attorneys of Gerson & Schwartz are dedicated to protecting and enforcing the rights of rape and sexual assault victims. With more than 30 years of experiencing litigating a variety of complex injury and assault claims, the Florida injury attorneys of Gerson & Schwartz, P.A. will fight to help victims of sexual assault and rape obtain the justice a compensation they deserve.