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Press Release

Former Milwaukee Police Officer Sentenced to 24 Years in Prison for Civil Rights Violation and Sexual Assault

For Immediate Release
Office of Public Affairs

WASHINGTON – Former Milwaukee Police Officer Ladmarald Cates was sentenced today by U.S. District Judge J.P. Stadtmueller to 24 years in prison, the Justice Department announced.  Cates was found guilty by a federal jury on Jan. 11, 2012, of a civil rights charge stemming from his July 16, 2010, sexual assault of a Milwaukee woman. 
The evidence at trial established that on July 16, 2010, Cates, while acting as a Milwaukee police officer, responded to a 911 call for police assistance at the victim’s home.  The defendant then used a combination of coercion and intimidation to force the victim to commit sexual acts before forcibly raping her.

“This officer committed a heinous act by raping a woman who called on the police because she needed help.  His outrageous conduct requires the significant prison sentence delivered by the court today,” said Thomas E. Perez, Assistant Attorney General for the Civil Rights Division.  “The Justice Department remains committed to aggressively prosecuting officers who use their authority to violate civil rights.”

“The 24-year term of imprisonment imposed upon this defendant reflects both the flagrant violation of the fundamental civil rights of a member of our community and the unconscionable conduct of a law enforcement officer sworn to protect our citizens,” said James L. Santelle, U.S. Attorney for the Eastern District of Wisconsin.  “The message to all of our constituents, including the police, is that horrific behaviors of this sort will result in prompt investigation, focused prosecution, and prolonged incarceration.”

Following an internal investigation, the Milwaukee Police Department fired Cates.

The prosecution of this case was based upon the cooperation and support of the Milwaukee Police Department, which worked closely with the FBI in the investigation.  The case was prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Mel. S. Johnson of the Eastern District of Wisconsin and Criminal Section Trial Attorney Saeed A. Mody of the Justice Department’s Civil Rights Division.

Updated September 15, 2014

Press Release Number: 12-951