Accuser says system failed him in Robert Lipscomb investigation - WMC Action News 5 - Memphis, Tennessee

Accuser says system failed him in Robert Lipscomb investigation

(Source: WMC Action News 5) (Source: WMC Action News 5)

The accuser who kicked off an investigation involving the former director of Housing and Community Development spoke with WMC Action News 5's Jerry Askin from Seattle Wednesday morning.

The 26-year-old victim said all he wants from Robert Lipscomb is an apology and for him to come forward and admit what he said happened.

"I wish Mr. Lipscomb will come forward and tell the truth," said the victim. "I'm in rage. I'm hurt."

The accuser, too emotional to show his face, claims Lipscomb sexually abused him more than a dozen times, dating back to when he was 16 years old. He said Lipscomb initially approached him from a car as he was walking home.

"He rode up on me one day and gave me $500," the victim explained.

The accuser claims he got in the car with Lipscomb only because he had on city cuff links. He said Lipscomb ultimately forced him into sex acts. He said Lipscomb even paid him and urged him to keep quiet.

"After asking me what I was doing out there and asking me my age, and what did I want, he started to proposition me," the victim explained. "He touched me across my shoulders, he groped my inner thigh and he pulled me over the arm rest and he pulled his (expletive) out and pushed my head into his lap."

The accuser said he was homeless and Lipscomb promised to help find a job and housing. He told WMC Action News 5 he's coming forward now because this has been haunting him for years.

"What am I supposed to do, let this fester and die with me?" the victim added.

Despite his own criminal past, the victim said he wants justice so he can try to get back the peace he said was taken from him.

"This has gone on long enough This is a ripple effect. Anger doesn't just hurt you, it hurts those around you. It's like poison; it spreads."

Additionally, he said he wants others to be more cautious when dealing with strangers.

"Don't get in the car with them," he explained.

The victim also addressed the 2010 formal complaint filed with Memphis police and claims he wasn't taken seriously. Lipscomb is denying the allegations.

Memphis police said they had a hard time tracking the victim down in 2010 because he was homeless and they couldn't locate him.

However, the victim said they didn't try to contact him to follow up.

"I told them where they could find me at," the victim explained. "I told the areas I hung out in."

He said he told Councilman Myron Lowery about the accusations in 2010.

"He wrote me off the same way Memphis Police Department did me at the station," said the victim. "'You sure you know who you're talking about? You're sure it's not about money?'"

Lowery explained his side of the story.

"I looked at him and said, 'I don't believe that.' And he said, 'well, it's true.' Well, I said, 'well then, you need to take those to the police department. He said, 'man, they won't listen.' I said, 'take them to the police department.'"

The accuser sad he feels the system failed him and blocked him from getting justice for years.

"They never tried to follow up on this situation."

Lipscomb currently faces no charges in relation to these allegations.

Meanwhile, Memphis CAO Jack Sammons wants all victims to know that help is available through the Shelby County Crime Victims Center.  Individuals can call them at 901-222-3950 or come to their office at 1750 Madison Avenue, Suite 100. The center's services are free of charge.

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