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Judge orders Las Vegas officer to turn himself in to jail

A Las Vegas police officer charged with sexually intimidating and harassing women he met on duty was ordered to report to jail by a judge Thursday.

Solomon Coleman, 28, appeared in a gray suit and was accompanied by about a dozen family and friends in court.

Justice of the Peace William Kephart ordered Coleman to turn himself into the Clark County jail by 9 a.m. Friday and set bail at $16,000 for the five-year veteran of the Metropolitan Police Department.

If Coleman is able to post bail — his lawyer, Josh Tomsheck, assured he would — the officer would be placed on house arrest, Kephart said.

The judge warned Coleman, who was on administrative leave from the police department, to leave his defense in his lawyer’s hands.

“Don’t go proactive and screw it up,” Kephart said.

Afterward, Tomsheck said “there’s more to the story than we know at this time.”

Kephart set a preliminary hearing in the case for Jan. 14, where prosecutors must show they have enough evidence for the case to go to trial.

Coleman, as first reported by the Review-Journal, was charged with oppression under color of law, gross lewdness and taking pictures of a person’s private area. One count of oppression under color of law is a felony. The police department’s policy is to relieve an officer without pay when charged with a felony pending the outcome of the case.

Prosecutors charged Coleman for encounters with two women, but police identified at least five women the officer met while wearing his badge.

Police said he developed a pattern of starting “relationships” with women he met at crime scenes and on routine calls, using his authority as an officer to gain their trust.

Coleman’s misdeeds were uncovered in June after the first woman complained about his behavior. The newspaper does not publish the names of alleged sex crime victims.

She told the Review-Journal on Wednesday that Coleman stayed at her home after other officers took her boyfriend to jail following a domestic disturbance.

A female officer had already taken photos of bruises on her neck, arms and back, but Coleman said he also needed to “check for bruises on her ass,” according to court documents.

The woman told Coleman she didn’t have bruises there, but he “insisted on checking anyway,” the report said. She said Coleman pulled down her shorts and underwear to her knees and asked her to bend over on the bed.

The woman said Coleman stayed behind to give her paperwork, but then followed her into her bedroom to help her look for missing house keys.

She felt forced to comply when Coleman pulled down her pants.

At one point, her son walked into the bedroom before being ushered out by the officer.

“That’s the worst thing anybody can do to me. To hell with me, but if my frickin’ son witnessed this? Now I have to deal with my son being insecure and asking questions about police officers,” she said.

Coleman later exposed himself to her in her bathroom and asked “if she liked it” and “if it was big,” she said.

When the officer came back after his shift, the woman saw him through the blinds but wouldn’t open the door, she said.

Detectives checked Coleman’s patrol log, which showed the officer left her home 36 minutes after his fellow officers.

After the first complaint, investigators dug through Coleman’s cellphone records and patrol logs. They found another victim, but she was not even aware of what happened.

Coleman used his phone to record more than 20 minutes of a personal sex video the woman had stored on her phone, the report said. The video had been on Coleman’s phone for a year when detectives found it.

Detectives found three more women who began relationships with Coleman after meeting him on the job. Coleman has not been charged with any crimes relating to those relationships, but he could face internal discipline.

Contact reporter Francis McCabe at fmccabe@reviewjournal.com or 702-380-1039.

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