By Jim Angell, Cowboy State Daily
A woman who accused a former Casper businessman of sexually assaulting her in 2017 has filed a federal lawsuit in the incident.
In the lawsuit filed in U.S. District Court, the woman is asking for a jury trial in her complaint against Tony Cercy, now a Texas resident, which alleges he sexually assaulted her and threatened to have her killed if she told anyone about the incident.
Cercy was acquitted on two charges stemming from the incident in 2018 and convicted on a charge of third-degree sexual assault in a second trial in 2018. However, the conviction was overturned by the Wyoming Supreme Court on the grounds the jury in Cercy’s trial was given improper instructions.
After the Supreme Court’s ruling, prosecutors declined to seek a third trial.
According to the lawsuit, the woman, who lives in South Carolina, was at Alcova Reservoir in June 2017 with friends and after dinner, she went with a group of friends to a party at Cercy’s lake house.
The lawsuit said the woman was was intoxicated and fell asleep on a couch in Cercy’s home fully dressed.
The woman awoke in the early morning hours to find that most of her clothes had been removed and that Cercy was performing oral sex on her, the lawsuit said.
The woman tried to get in contact with her friends to obtain help and tried to flee Cercy’s house, the lawsuit said. It added that as she walked down the driveway from the house, Cercy pulled up next to her in a “side-by-side” recreational vehicle and told her he would take her where she wanted to go.
The woman asked Cercy to take her to a trailer where she believed some of her friends were staying. He did so in a ride the lawsuit described as “frightening” due to Cercy’s “reckless and dangerous” driving.
“When plaintiff climbed out of the ‘side-by-side,’ (Cercy) told plaintiff that if she told anyone what she had just woken up to (Cercy) would have plaintiff killed,” the lawsuit said.
The lawsuit alleged Cercy called the woman’s cell phone number three days later “to get on the same page as to what had happened at the lake.”
The woman reported the assault to law enforcement agencies that day.
In the lawsuit, the woman accused Cercy of sexual battery by having sexual contact with her without her consent or knowledge, and of assault by threatening to have her killed if she spoke of the encounter.
The lawsuit does not request a specific amount in damages.
(Editor’s note: It is the practice of Cowboy State Daily not to identify possible victims of sexual assault.)