Zoe Brugger was pulled over for a broken headlight, when the officer suspected there were drugs in the vehicle
Officer Dustin Fetz asked Brugger to twice shake out her bra to see if she was hiding anything
Brugger filed a complaint and sent a letter to the State Attorney's Office
The State Attorney has investigated the issue and the Lakeland Police Department is starting their own investigation
Zoe Brugger was driving home after picking up her boyfriend from work, when a routine traffic stop turned particularly uncomfortable.
Brugger's headlight was out, which prompted the stop by Lakeland, Florida police officer Dustin Fetz.
Fetz believed that the two were hiding drugs in the car, so he asked Brugger to exit the vehicle. Outside of the car, he asked her to lift up her shirt and shake out her bra - not once, but twice - in order to see if she was concealing anything. The request didn't reveal any drugs, and a subsequent search of the vehicle didn't produce anything either.
Brugger told ABC Action News that Fetz 'made me go through the whole humiliating ordeal with shaking my bra out, right there in the middle of this parking lot on Beacon Road.'
When no drugs appeared, Fetz 'told me that he was taking me to Bartow jail for driving on a suspended license and that they had an x-ray machine there and they were definitely going to find what I had hidden inside of me,' Brugger said.
Brugger was driving on an invalid license, which was enough reason to arrest her. But Fetz didn't. Instead he asked to search the vehicle, and when the couple relented, he searched it anyway.
Another office who showed up as backup considered the search improper.
Fetz broke another rule during the stop by leaving the audio off in the dash camera. If the audio had been turned on, 'there would be little to no speculation as to what occurred during that traffic stop,' said State Attorney Investigator Mike Brown.
At the end of the stop, Fetz told Brugger 'I'm done scaring you, and now you can do home,' she told The News Herald. After the incident, she filed a complaint and notified the State Attorney's Office.
Bold: Brugger had just returned from picking up her boyfriend from work. He was in the car the whole time Officer Fetz searched Brugger
State Attorney Jerry Hill called for an investigation and wrote a critical letter to the Lakeland Police Department saying that the search was 'highly questionable' and not only 'demeaning' but 'ineffective and possibly dangerous.'
He cited the fact that, if Brugger had been concealing a weapon, asking her to shake out her bra would have just given her access to that weapon.
Fetz, on the other hand, told investigators that the search method 'is a known technique that is used by some LPD officers though he can't recall formally being trained to use it.
'Looking back on the incident (Fetz) recognizes that he was overzealous in his attempt to locate illegal drugs or contraband in the car,' Brown said.
Fetz was put on a four day suspension with pay during the investigation and returned to work on June 18. The Lakeland Police Department will now be conducting their own investigation of the incident, in order to determine whether or not to terminate Fetz.
'This department does not condone the alleged actions as have been reported in recent days and any officer proven to be involved in this type of behavior will be dealt with accordingly, including possible termination,' Lakeland Police Chief Lisa Womack said in a statement.
OP: Florida. Florida! What's going on with you? There's a video and pictures at the source. We really, really need a 'meanwhile in florida...' tag.