A Brooklyn Park woman walked into Regions Hospital in St. Paul on Aug. 30 and said she had been sexually assaulted and was in pain, according to court documents. She was admitted and given narcotic painkillers. A specially trained nurse examined her.
Unfortunately for the woman, the sexual assault nurse examiner (SANE) recognized Leticia N. Jones from a visit she had made to Hennepin County Medical Center in Minneapolis two days earlier, the documents said. In that case, Jones had walked into the Minneapolis hospital and said she had been sexually assaulted. She was examined and given the painkiller Dilaudid, documents said.
Further investigation found no evidence that the woman had been sexually assaulted on either day in either city, police and court documents said.
Jones, 35, was charged Nov. 5 in Hennepin County District Court with fifth-degree drug possession, a felony, in connection with the Aug. 28 incident. A search warrant affidavit filed Wednesday in Ramsey County District Court asks for medical records, case notes and other information from Regions in connection with the Aug. 30 incident. No charges have been filed in Ramsey County.
False reports of sexual assault are "very rare," said Donna Dunn, executive director of the Minnesota Coalition Against Sexual Assault. But they complicate the work of those who strive to help survivors of sexual assault and get them the help they need. National studies say only about 16 percent of rape victims report the assault.
"The most important thing to me is that we have worked to establish policy in the state of Minnesota that really supports survivors having ready access to medical attention as well as to services that can do evidence collection for sexual assault," Dunn said.
"That's a critical service we have to keep providing and have to keep trusting that our systems of investigation will uncover if someone is being fraudulent," she said.
Jones' first court appearance in Hennepin County is scheduled for Dec. 23.
Pat Pheifer • 651-298-1551