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Cleveland Mayoral Aide Charged With Rape And Sexual Battery

In March, a grand jury secretly indicted Cleveland mayoral aide Alexander Lackey, shown here in a 2017 city photo.
City of Cleveland
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In March, a grand jury secretly indicted Cleveland mayoral aide Alexander Lackey, shown here in a 2017 city photo.

A special assistant in the Cleveland mayor’s office has been indicted on charges of rape, sexual battery and domestic violence.

A Cuyahoga County grand jury indicted Alexander Lackey, 35, on March 22. But prosecutors kept those charges secret out of concern that Lackey’s job as the city’s international affairs coordinator might require “global travel” and that he could try to flee prosecution, according to a spokesman for Cuyahoga County Prosecutor Michael O’Malley.

County prosecutors accuse Lackey of sexually assaulting the victim multiple times at his home between October 2018, when she was 17, and December 2020.

Lackey is scheduled to appear in Cuyahoga County Common Pleas Court April 13, according to court records.

A message left with an attorney who represented Lackey in a related case has not been returned, and Lackey did not respond to a text message seeking comment.  

According to the mayor’s office, Lackey was placed on paid leave pending a pre-disciplinary hearing on March 29, after the city was notified of the indictment. The indictment was unsealed March 30, according to court records, and the charges were first reported by WKYC.

Lackey was hired in 2014 as a special assistant to Cleveland Mayor Frank Jackson, according to personnel records. In 2017, he was named government affairs coordinator for international and legislative projects, serving as the city’s liaison with international partners such as sister cities, according to city records.

The case originated with a Jan. 6 domestic violence call to Lackey’s home on the West Side of Cleveland, according to prosecutors. Police interviewed Lackey and a 19-year-old described in police reports as a girlfriend.

In an interview at a hospital, the 19-year-old told police she and Lackey had lived together for more than a year and had started dating three years prior, according to a police report.

Lackey was charged with domestic violence, unlawful restraint and aggravated menacing on Jan. 12 in Cleveland Municipal Court, according to court records. He pleaded not guilty to those charges, all of which are misdemeanors.

On March 3, Lackey requested permission to travel to Florida, according to the municipal court docket. The request was granted – over city prosecutors’ objections – on March 19, provided Lackey wear a GPS monitor. The monitor was set to be removed upon his scheduled return March 29, according to the court docket.

The Cleveland police sex crimes and child abuse unit conducted a subsequent investigation, leading to the felony sexual assault charges, according to the county prosecutor’s office.

After a county grand jury returned the secret felony indictment, the misdemeanor municipal case was dismissed, according to court records.

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