Payout Tops $1 Million in Oakland Strip-Search Case

Oakland taxpayers are paying out big for a strip-search case.

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Bare skin does not come cheap. Not for the Oakland Police Department, anyway.

Two Oakland men who were strip-searched in public in 2005 -- a former Oakland cop pulled down their pants in West Oakland after they were stopped for (as it turned out) no lawful reason -- received $245,000 in damages, but the big payout was to their lawyers: John Brruis and Michael Haddad received $832,000 in legal fees from city taxpayers, according to the San Francisco Chronicle.

The settlement was approved Tuesday by the Oakland City Council.

In 2005, Spencer Troy Lucas and Kirby Bradshaw had their pants pulled down on a busy West Oakland street by Ingo Mayer, who was an Oakland cop at the time. Mayer pulled them over for no lawful reason, which made the strip-search very unlawful, according to a federal judge.

Mayer retired on disability as a result of the trial, the newspaper reported. He was ordered to pay one of the victims $25,000 out of pocket, but has since moved in court to be indemnified for the award, the newspaper reported.

Mayer handcuffed Lucas and undid his belt buckle, causing Lucas' pants to fall to his ankles, according to testimony. The officer then asked Lucas if he had any drugs in his buttocks, the newspaper reported. The officer pulled Lucas's underpants halfway down and shook them against his genitals as a crowd gathered to watch, the judge wrote.

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