TRAVELERS REST, S.C. (WSPA) – A former Travelers Rest police officer accused of forcing a woman to perform sexual acts on him while on duty appeared in bond court Friday morning.
Gerard James Hildebrandt, 42, was arrested in April.
According to the South Carolina Law Enforcement Division, in July 2022 while working for the Travelers Rest Police Department Hildebrandt took a woman to Travelers Rest High School to perform sexual acts.
“This officer is horrible,” Bakari Sellers, the victims’ attorney said. “He gives the entire department and the city of Travelers Rest a bad name. I am glad he is off the streets.”
SLED said the allegations were based on body camera footage, physical evidence and statements from the victim.
“We are very, very thankful for the work of SLED in this case,” Sellers said. “It is not easy to bring cases against law enforcement when they misbehave but SLED did yeoman’s work in this case.”
Hildebrandt appeared before a judge who granted him a $150,000 surety bond.
“He violated this woman’s trust,” Sellers said. “He took her to a dark area, and he raped her. He raped her on her car. Whenever your boyfriend calls the police, or you call the police they are supposed to serve and protect. I don’t think it says serve, protect, and rape.”
According to reports Hildebrandt also worked for the Laurens County Sheriff’s Office before he was dismissed for violating department policy.
“This officer was terminated from Laurens Police Department for excessive force violations and violating department guidelines,” Sellers said. “How he got hired in another city is beyond me.”
Sellers tells us his team will be pursuing a federal civil rights lawsuit against the officer and the department as well.
The State Law Enforcement Division says if anyone has any other information about Hildebrandt to contact them.