The hotel maid who claims that Dominique Strauss-Kahn tried to rape her in a Times Square hotel suite filed a civil lawsuit against the former IMF head yesterday. The suit, which called the alleged attack "violent and sadistic," says, "[Nafissatou] Diallo now brings this lawsuit to vindicate her rights, to assert her dignity as a woman, to hold Dominique Strauss-Kahn accountable for the violent and deplorable acts that he committed against her in Room 2806 [the luxury suite at the Sofitel], to teach her young [15-year-old] daughter that no man—regardless of how much money, power and influence he has—should ever be allowed to violate her body, and to stand up for all women who have been raped, sexually assaulted and/or abused throughout the world but who are too afraid to speak out.”

According to the NY Times, the lawsuit is unusual because it was filed before the criminal matter has concluded. Of course, Diallo's claims that Strauss-Kahn assaulted her have reportedly been compromised, so she's been waging a media campaign to win public perception. The suit was filed in the Bronx, whose jury would probably be more sympathetic to Diallo, an African immigrant and single mother, than a powerful French politician married to a billionaire.

The lawsuit is also very detailed about the incident; the Daily Beast reports, "Specifically it cites an injury to Diallo’s shoulder as well as 'redness' on her vagina where Strauss-Kahn is alleged to have groped her, ripping her pantyhose and forcing her to her knees." Strauss-Kahn's lawyers said, "We have maintained from the beginning that the motivation of [Diallo's lawyer Kenneth] Thompson and his client was to make money. The filing of this lawsuit ends any doubt on that question. The civil suit has no merit and Mr.Strauss-Kahn will defend it vigorously."