A New Orleans police officer was arrested on Sept. 9 on charges of rape after a woman said the off-duty cop sexually assaulted her while she was drunk and asleep.
William Burford, a 28-year-old probationary officer with the New Orleans Police Department, faces a third degree rape charge, according to Lt. Brian McGregor, a spokesman for the Kenner Police Department.
"He knew she was intoxicated," McGregor said, notes The Times-Picayune. "He thought it was OK. I don't know what led him to believe that."
Burford is under unpaid emergency suspension as NOPD officials investigate the case.
"William Burford has been placed on emergency suspension without pay while this incident is being investigated by the Public Integrity Bureau," a NOPD spokesperson said in a statement, according to WDSU. "Burford joined the department as a recruit in December of 2015, and was serving as an officer in the Fifth District prior to this incident."
"The allegations against Mr. Buford in no way reflect the values of the NOPD," the spokesperson added.
An affidavit states that the 20-year-old victim reportedly went out drinking with her roommate and Burford, who were casually dating, on Sept. 7. At around 4 a.m., they came home and the victim went to bed because she had a lot to drink, according to the court document.
The victim reportedly slept in her roommate's bed, which she had been regularly doing as her room is being renovated.
She said she later woke up to find Burford on top of her, and was hardly able to move because his legs were on top of her legs.
"You can keep a secret, right?" he reportedly asked her before raping her.
She said she struggled and tried to push him off, but was unable to because he was so much bigger than her.
When she woke up on Sept. 8, she felt nauseous and continued to vomit until the afternoon. The victim says she told her roommate at around 2 p.m. that Burford should leave because "something was wrong."
He left, reportedly under the assumption that the roommate needed to care for her sick friend. The victim then told her roommate everything, packed up the clothing she was wearing during the assault and went to the hospital for a rape screening, said investigators.
She told her story to police and correctly identified Burford, who was then arrested.
Burford gave a voluntary statement to police, in which he said he had consensual sex with the victim, though he did say she did not verbally tell him it was OK, according to the affidavit.
Burford graduated from police academy in October 2016, notes The Times-Picayune.