A Beverly Hills police sergeant filed a second lawsuit maintaining he has experienced more retaliation for filing his first complaint against the city, in which he alleged he suffered backlash for reporting that another member of the department peeked at Whitney Houston’s dead body.
Sgt. Brian Weir brought the complaint Wednesday in Los Angeles Superior Court. Like the first suit he filed March 10, he alleges he was harassed and denied promotions for reporting the alleged misconduct of a detective, Sgt. Terry Nutall, the night Houston died in a bathtub at the Beverly Hilton Hotel.
Weir’s original suit alleges that on Feb. 11, 2012, Nutall knelt beside and leaned over Houston, removed the sheet covering her body and said, “Damn, she’s still looking good, huh?”
Nutall also made comments “to the effect and substance that (Houston) looked attractive for a woman her age and current state,” the lawsuit states. Attorneys for the city have denied any wrongdoing on Nutall’s part.
In his new lawsuit Weir alleges that three months after filing his first case, he was denied a promotions to a police dog-handling position, a job within the criminal intelligence unit and the chance to work prostitution sting operations, all of which would have brought him more overtime pay and other compensation.
He also has been placed “under increased and unwarranted scrutiny and supervision” and been subjected to “additional harassing, disparaging and retaliatory comments and other communications by the command staff of the department,” the suit alleges.
Weir’s lawyer, Christopher Brizzolara, said it is unlawful to disturb or move a decedent’s body without the coroner’s permission. He said that taking the sheet from her body was just as wrong as it would have been to take off her blouse.
Brizzolara said that Weir was present at the scene because he was on a patrol that night and called to assist the first two officers to arrive. Nutall, then a forgery detective, had no business there, Brizzolara said.
Weir was on a fast ascent within the department’s promotional ladder before he reported Nutall’s alleged misconduct, Brizzolara said.
Houston, 48, was found submerged in a bathtub in her hotel room just before the Grammy Awards. The coroner’s office concluded she drowned accidentally, with heart disease and cocaine use listed as contributing factors.
Nutall’s alleged actions violated state or federal statutes that forbid disturbing or moving the body of a decedent without permission of the coroner and also presented potential DNA contamination issues, the lawsuit states.
Nutall has since been promoted to lieutenant, Weir’s original suit states.