A Bonner Springs woman alleges a Eudora police officer lunged at her and put her in a headlock early Sunday morning as she was driving him in a taxi to a Douglas County strip club.
Thomas Clinton Leahew, 29, the officer who is on administrative leave pending an internal department investigation, faces one misdemeanor count of battery in Douglas County District Court. Douglas County Sheriff’s officers arrested him at 5 a.m. Sunday in the 1800 section of North 1500 Road on suspicion of battery.
In an interview with the Journal-World, the alleged victim, a 35-year-old woman, accused Leahew of lunging at her from the back of a van while she was driving Leahew and six other people to The Outhouse, 1837 N. 1500 Road. The woman said he grabbed her and put her in a headlock, and that Leahew hit his head when he lunged and was bleeding. Officers said Monday the woman had minor injuries.
She stopped the vehicle, she said, and the friends calmed down Leahew. The woman then drove the men to a Lawrence hotel and called police.
The cab driver said it was the second time she had transported the group that night.
Leahew, who is free on bond, appeared briefly in court Thursday afternoon, and his attorney, Trey Meyer, asked District Judge Paula Martin for a Sept. 22 hearing to give him time to review information in the case. Andrea Nelson, a Shawnee County assistant district attorney, is the special prosecutor in the case because Douglas County prosecutors recused themselves from the case.
The Journal-World generally does not identify crime victims unless they testify in open court.