Man who sued Deming, Hidalgo County over wrongful buttocks probe for drugs settles for $1.6 million

POSTED: 11:11 AM MST Jan 13, 2014    UPDATED: 08:26 PM MST Jan 16, 2014 
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The City of Deming and Hidalgo County have settled a lawsuit with a man who was anally probed in a search for drugs.

According to a KOB-TV report, the lawsuit was settled in December for $1.6 million.

What Happened

A review of medical records, police reports and a federal lawsuit show deputies with the Hidalgo County Sheriff's Office, police officers with the City of Deming and medical professionals at the Gila Regional Medical Center made some questionable decisions.

The incident began January 2, 2013 after David Eckert finished shopping at the Wal-Mart in Deming.  According to a federal lawsuit, Eckert didn't make a complete stop at a stop sign coming out of the parking lot and was immediately stopped by law enforcement.      

Eckert's attorney, Shannon Kennedy, said in an interview with KOB that after law enforcement asked him to step out of the vehicle, he appeared to be clenching his buttocks.  Law enforcement thought that was probable cause to suspect that Eckert was hiding narcotics in his anal cavity.  While officers detained Eckert, they secured a search warrant from a judge that allowed for an anal cavity search.  

The lawsuit claims that Deming Police tried taking Eckert to an emergency room in Deming, but a doctor there refused to perform the anal cavity search citing it was "unethical."

But physicians at the Gila Regional Medical Center in Silver City agreed to perform the procedure and a few hours later, Eckert was admitted.

Read the full KOB-TV story on the settlement and the case at http://bit.ly/19pISeZ