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  1. #1
    hoefinger is offline Junior Member
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    False Arrest for a DUI and ABUSE by POLICE in MAINE

    What is the name of your state (only U.S. law)? MAINE
    While vacationing in Bar Harbor, Maine and driving back to our campsite with our car with New York plates at 2:30am, I was pulled over by a rookie police officer who claimed i was 'driving erratically'--I was driving 38 miles per hour in a 40 zone and changing the radio station. He asked if i had any alcohol and I said yes, one beer two hours ago. He made me get out of the car and stand barefooted on cold wet mud and gravel to conduct 5 sobriety tests: touching top of pen, following pen with eyes while he moved the pen well out range of vision, walking in a straight line for nine step back and forth with hands at sides while looking down at feet and counting aloud --which i completed with the grace, balance and composure of a ballerina, lifting one leg straight into the air with hands at sides while i counted aloud until he told me to stop after 18 seconds--which i did effortlessly without swaying or lifting an arm for balance, and the cognitive test of writing the alphabet starting from D to Y, signing my name, date, and time, which i completed in less than 10 seconds without flaw.
    After the humiliation of acting like a monkey and completing the tests flawlessly I assumed I had proved that the one beer I consumed 2 hours earlier was well out of my system and I was perfectly capable to drive. But suddenly he was pushing me against the back of my car and telling me i was under arrest for DUI because I had FAILED the tests. I was in shock and protested that I hadn't even been given a breathalizer test yet! I panicked because his demeanor was nervous and I knew I was sober and passed all tests so I couldn't understand why I was still being handcuffed and arrested. I suddenly thought he had malintentions as we were in middle of a country road with no other cars or houses in site...so i panicked and requested other police come to the scene before I got into the police car in restraints as I wanted witnesses and feared that he was going to take me to an isolated spot and rape me. I was terrified and was resisting getting into the car and shouting to my sister to call 911 so that other cops would arrive at the scene.
    He mandhandled me, shoved me, and violently pushed me into the cop car head first and slammed the door and locked me in. Finally another cop car arrived with two other police who ignored my pleas to speak to them. They informed my sister that they would tow our car while she came to police station with us (she couldnt drive as she had lots more to drink than my one beer) or she had to drive back to camp ground in a cop car, wake up our mother who suffers from heart problems, drag her in the cop car to our car to drive it to police station. They refused to let our car stay alongside the road on the gravel until the situation was dealt with, and insisted it had to be towed, or our mother had to be traumatized and woken up and driven in the cop car to move it. The cops were uncooperative, intimidating, and trying to assert their authority.
    Meanwhile I was driven to the police station with just the original cop (he ignored my request to NOT be driven alone with him). There, I was left to wait with incredibly tight handcuffs for an hour and half to receive my breathalizer. I finally requested the handcuffs be removed and I was left with huge purple and red indentations which led to severe bruising. My mother finally arrived at the station hysterical and in shock. They refused to let her see me. She was told to go to an ATM machine and withdraw $540 cash for my bail--which she did (they claimed they only took cash and no other form of payment). In the end, I finally received my breathalizer which read .02--so I was WELL UNDER THE .08 LIMIT and completely INNOCENT after all!!! My license, registration, insurance card were returned to me along with a printout of my .02 breathalizer test and I was released with a 'Sorry about that'.
    Unfortunately, 'Sorry' doesn't make up for the complete and utter violation of rights. Not only was I treated as Guilty Until Proven Innocent, I was not read my Miranda Rights, I was humiliated, treated with force, violence, and police brutality, left with bruising and marks on my body, and have suffered great emotional trauma from the event--as did my ailing mother and sister who have been greatly emotionally traumatized by the ordeal while on family holiday. I want to file a civil suit or a law suit against the police officer who arrested me--but I'm a resident of New York, and I currently live in London, England where I am completing my PhD and work as a Professor of Cambodian Gender Studies. I don't know where to begin but i know my rights have been violated and I want to take action. Anyone who knows the process and next step PLEASE HELP!!!
  2. #2
    Zigner is offline Senior Member
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    File a complaint against the officer.
  3. #3
    tranquility is offline Senior Member
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    The first thing I'd hope is that they don't charge you anyway. Being under .08 does not mean you're innocent of DUI, it just means you are not guilty of the seperate offense of driving with over a .08 BAC. Second, I'd hope they don't charge you with resisting arrest. From your description, you would be guilty of that irregardless of the underlying charge. I don't think beliving you were going to be raped by the cop is reasonable and I don't think it would be a proper defense.

    Most of the rest of your post seems the result of your resistence and not the cop's misconduct. Although the police are not supposed to retaliate for complaints against officers, in the real world I'd be careful about making a compliant when potential criminal charges are still out there. Speak with an attorney before doing anything.
  4. #4
    Zigner is offline Senior Member
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    Quote Originally Posted by tranquility View Post
    The first thing I'd hope is that they don't charge you anyway. Being under .08 does not mean you're innocent of DUI, it just means you are not guilty of the seperate offense of driving with over a .08 BAC. Second, I'd hope they don't charge you with resisting arrest. From your description, you would be guilty of that irregardless of the underlying charge. I don't think beliving you were going to be raped by the cop is reasonable and I don't think it would be a proper defense.

    Most of the rest of your post seems the result of your resistence and not the cop's misconduct. Although the police are not supposed to retaliate for complaints against officers, in the real world I'd be careful about making a compliant when potential criminal charges are still out there. Speak with an attorney before doing anything.
    Much better advice than I gave
  5. #5
    hoefinger is offline Junior Member
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    Quote Originally Posted by tranquility View Post
    The first thing I'd hope is that they don't charge you anyway. Being under .08 does not mean you're innocent of DUI, it just means you are not guilty of the seperate offense of driving with over a .08 BAC. Second, I'd hope they don't charge you with resisting arrest. From your description, you would be guilty of that irregardless of the underlying charge. I don't think beliving you were going to be raped by the cop is reasonable and I don't think it would be a proper defense.

    Most of the rest of your post seems the result of your resistence and not the cop's misconduct. Although the police are not supposed to retaliate for complaints against officers, in the real world I'd be careful about making a compliant when potential criminal charges are still out there. Speak with an attorney before doing anything.
    Thanks for your response....however how can potential criminal charges still be out there if i was released with 'an apology'?....its all been dropped, but im angry about my treatment. dont i have a right to request other officers arrive at the scene in middle of the night on a dark country road before being violently pushed into a police car? when i pass flawlessly 5 sobriety tests, is that not sufficient evidence that im capable of driving? arent my physical bruises and emotional trauma enough to file a civil suit against this rookie cop who was only practicing his arrest techniques after i was clearly sober?
  6. #6
    Zigner is offline Senior Member
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    Quote Originally Posted by hoefinger View Post
    Thanks for your response....however how can potential criminal charges still be out there if i was released with 'an apology'?....its all been dropped, but im angry about my treatment. dont i have a right to request other officers arrive at the scene in middle of the night on a dark country road before being violently pushed into a police car? when i pass flawlessly 5 sobriety tests, is that not sufficient evidence that im capable of driving? arent my physical bruises and emotional trauma enough to file a civil suit against this rookie cop who was only practicing his arrest techniques after i was clearly sober?
    Are you trained to recognize what the officer is looking for with the field sobriety tests?
  7. #7
    hoefinger is offline Junior Member
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    [QUOTE=Zigner;1995325]Are you trained to recognize what the officer is looking for with the field sobriety tests?[/QUOTE

    loss of balance, raising arms for balance, inability to walk in a straight line or follow directions, swaying, lack of concentration and focus, lack of cognitive inability to recall alphabet from D to Y, write date and time properly, slurring of words, lack of cooperation....
  8. #8
    Zigner is offline Senior Member
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    [QUOTE=hoefinger;1995330]
    Quote Originally Posted by Zigner View Post
    Are you trained to recognize what the officer is looking for with the field sobriety tests?[/QUOTE

    loss of balance, raising arms for balance, inability to walk in a straight line or follow directions, swaying, lack of concentration and focus, lack of cognitive inability to recall alphabet from D to Y, write date and time properly, slurring of words, lack of cooperation....
    Yes, now answer the question: Are you trainted to recognize what the officer is looking for with the field sobriety tests?
  9. #9
    CdwJava is offline Senior Member
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    Quote Originally Posted by hoefinger View Post
    After the humiliation of acting like a monkey and completing the tests flawlessly
    Unfortunately, YOU are in the worst position to determine if you completed the tests "flawlessly". Perhaps you did and the officer is a complete boob ... but, perhaps you didn't - for whatever reason. Swaying and stumbling are not the only clues officers are trained to look for in the Standardized Field Sobriety tests.

    I assumed I had proved that the one beer I consumed 2 hours earlier was well out of my system and I was perfectly capable to drive.
    If true, and there was no additional alcohol or other impairing substance (such as medication or drugs), then you would be right.

    I was in shock and protested that I hadn't even been given a breathalizer test yet!
    That opportunity comes AFTER the arrest.

    I was terrified and was resisting getting into the car and shouting to my sister to call 911 so that other cops would arrive at the scene.
    He mandhandled me, shoved me, and violently pushed me into the cop car head first and slammed the door and locked me in.
    You were struggling against him ... he is under no obligation to be nice, kind, and gentle at that point. The officer isn't paid to play nice when people start resisting arrest.

    They informed my sister that they would tow our car while she came to police station with us (she couldnt drive as she had lots more to drink than my one beer) or she had to drive back to camp ground in a cop car, wake up our mother who suffers from heart problems, drag her in the cop car to our car to drive it to police station.
    They were much kinder than most officers would have been. Most would not have made that offer they would have just towed the car and offered her a ride to the campground or the police station - not a ride to the campground to get a driver.

    They refused to let our car stay alongside the road on the gravel until the situation was dealt with, and insisted it had to be towed, or our mother had to be traumatized and woken up and driven in the cop car to move it. The cops were uncooperative, intimidating, and trying to assert their authority.
    No, they were adhering to law and policy. Most agencies do not permit officers to secure vehicles on the side of the road for a couple of reasons - not the least of which is that something might happen to it if they leave it there and then they might get sued.

    Meanwhile I was driven to the police station with just the original cop (he ignored my request to NOT be driven alone with him).
    He doesn't have to comply with that request to drive with someone else. In many agencies, that just would not be practical.

    She was told to go to an ATM machine and withdraw $540 cash for my bail--which she did (they claimed they only took cash and no other form of payment).
    That's probably true. You've heard the statement about bail, "cash or bond"? Well, it's cash or bond ... and, perhaps waking a bail bondsman for this isn't an option.

    In the end, I finally received my breathalizer which read .02--so I was WELL UNDER THE .08 LIMIT and completely INNOCENT after all!!!
    Keep in mind that .08 is NOT "the legal limit". While it raises the presumption that you were not impaired on alcohol, it IS higher than "one beer" two hours earlier.

    Unfortunately, 'Sorry' doesn't make up for the complete and utter violation of rights.
    Consult an attorney.

    Keep in mind that an arrest need be based solely on "probable cause" to believe you were impaired in violation of the law, not an absolute certainty. If the officer screwed up, then he needs to be held accountable. Only a personnel complaint and/or action by an attorney will spur that forward.

    I was not read my Miranda Rights,
    Not generally required. Both custody and interrogation have to be present for Miranda to apply.

    I want to file a civil suit or a law suit against the police officer who arrested me
    Consult an attorney. Your time to file a civil suit will expire, so you can't wait too long.


    - Carl
    A Nor Cal Cop Sergeant

    "Make mine a double mocha ...
    And a croissant!"

    Seek justice,
    Love mercy,
    Walk humbly with your God

    -- Courageous, by Casting Crowns ... http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pkM-gDcmJeM
  10. #10
    hoefinger is offline Junior Member
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    [QUOTE=Zigner;1995333]
    Quote Originally Posted by hoefinger View Post

    Yes, now answer the question: Are you trainted to recognize what the officer is looking for with the field sobriety tests?
    no im not a trained police officer am i ?!...im merely a university professor. what are you? it was obvious he was a brand new cop...nervous and unsure...with a great desire to practice how to make arrests. he knew i wasnt drunk because i completed his tests flawlessly and with composure, grace and cooperation. but simply because i admitted to drinking a beer several hours earlier he felt that was enough to arrest me. when i was in shock that he was still arresting me and handcuffing me i got scared and suspicious of his intent and requested other cops to please arrive at the scene. it was then that he felt he could start manhandling me, pushing, me, and violently throwing me into his cop car. he felt like an ass and apologized when i registered at .02 BAC because he knew he was wrong and misjudged me.
  11. #11
    tranquility is offline Senior Member
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    Thanks for your response....however how can potential criminal charges still be out there if i was released with 'an apology'?....
    Yes. They will have at least a year to charge you.

    dont i have a right to request other officers arrive at the scene in middle of the night on a dark country road before being violently pushed into a police car?
    No. Period.

    when i pass flawlessly 5 sobriety tests, is that not sufficient evidence that im capable of driving?
    This is your opinion. I bet the officer can give specific and articulable facts as to why he formed the opinion you were under the infulence.

    arent my physical bruises and emotional trauma enough to file a civil suit against this rookie cop who was only practicing his arrest techniques after i was clearly sober?
    Your legal conculsion is suspect in the first place and in the second, your physical and emotional trauma is almost insignificant as a matter of legal damages. Finally, rather than putting the blame on the officer, I'd (who will challenge the police as much as anyone else on this board) put the blame on the person who:
    panicked
    and raised the stress level of a single cop with two people at the stop and:
    requested other police come to the scene before I got into the police car in restraints
    He refused this unreasonable "request". Did you take any actions which would be a crime here?
    I was terrified and was resisting getting into the car and shouting to my sister to call 911 so that other cops would arrive at the scene.
    Oh, that's right, YOU RESISTED ARREST. People have been tased for a lot less and the police was perfectly justified. When the police arrest you, you do what the nice armed man says. You don't start telling him what you are willing to do. Face it. Unless you had a reasonable fear of unjustified harm to yourself, you are guilty of a crime. (The defense would be if it was reasonable to believe and you did, in fact believe.) Even then, you would have the burden of proving the reasonableness of a fear of getting raped by the cop. You will not be able to and, in fact, may not even be able to find a news story on this happening within the last few years. Your resistence is the problem, not police misconduct.

    I could go on, but you've got my advice which is to see an attorney before doing anything. Even if you are not charged for DUI, you can be charged for resisting arrest and I suspect your defense will not be valid.

    Go to You Tube and search for "Don't tase me, bro!". While you're there search for other tasings by the police. Know that in almost all those tapes the police was in policy. You did worse than most of those and the cop pushed you in the back seat and locked you in? Lucky you.
  12. #12
    You Are Guilty is offline Senior Member
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    .02 = No automatic presumption of intoxication, but does not equal "not intoxicated" or "not impaired"

    And as noted, there's 1 year to file charges from the date of offense.

    As for the officer's conduct, file a complaint.
    Last edited by You Are Guilty; 07-28-2008 at 12:17 PM. Reason: Whoops - wrong state
    Quote Originally Posted by Tranquility
    Once you get to crazy land, it is only a guess on how to get out.
  13. #13
    CdwJava is offline Senior Member
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    Quote Originally Posted by hoefinger View Post
    no im not a trained police officer am i ?!...im merely a university professor. what are you?
    That still doesn't answer Zigner's question about your training and experience in the recognition and identification of impairment.

    Yes, you may have completed the tests properly and the officer may well have been way off the mark. On the other hand, perhaps his observations were on the mark and he did have probable cause to make the arrest.

    No matter your shock and disbelief you do not have the lawful right to resist the arrest, nor do you have a lawful right to have other officers present during the arrest or the transportation.

    Being a college professor does not make one immune from being irrational, nor does it make one suddenly knowledgeable of police procedure or the identification of impairment. I have arrested medical doctors and college professors with far greater educations than my own for a variety of offenses including rape, child molestation, DUI, public intoxication, DV, etc. ... apparently their advanced degrees did not make them immune from poor behavior.

    he knew i wasnt drunk because i completed his tests flawlessly and with composure, grace and cooperation.
    If he "knew" that you passed the tests and arrests you solely on the basis of the one beer two hours earlier (which would NOT have resulted in a .02 unless it was a heck of a big beer) then you would have great grounds for a false arrest suit. However, I doubt that he wrote or admitted that anywhere. Hopefully he's not that stupid to make an arrest based upon such a statement, but I have seen dumber reasons for an arrest over the years.

    it was then that he felt he could start manhandling me, pushing, me, and violently throwing me into his cop car.
    When you resist the officer, you have to expect to be "manhandled". That's the way it is.

    - Carl
    A Nor Cal Cop Sergeant

    "Make mine a double mocha ...
    And a croissant!"

    Seek justice,
    Love mercy,
    Walk humbly with your God

    -- Courageous, by Casting Crowns ... http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pkM-gDcmJeM
  14. #14
    hoefinger is offline Junior Member
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    Quote Originally Posted by tranquility View Post
    Yes. They will have at least a year to charge you.

    No. Period.

    This is your opinion. I bet the officer can give specific and articulable facts as to why he formed the opinion you were under the infulence.

    Your legal conculsion is suspect in the first place and in the second, your physical and emotional trauma is almost insignificant as a matter of legal damages. Finally, rather than putting the blame on the officer, I'd (who will challenge the police as much as anyone else on this board) put the blame on the person who:
    and raised the stress level of a single cop with two people at the stop and:
    He refused this unreasonable "request". Did you take any actions which would be a crime here?
    Oh, that's right, YOU RESISTED ARREST. People have been tased for a lot less and the police was perfectly justified. When the police arrest you, you do what the nice armed man says. You don't start telling him what you are willing to do. Face it. Unless you had a reasonable fear of unjustified harm to yourself, you are guilty of a crime. (The defense would be if it was reasonable to believe and you did, in fact believe.) Even then, you would have the burden of proving the reasonableness of a fear of getting raped by the cop. You will not be able to and, in fact, may not even be able to find a news story on this happening within the last few years. Your resistence is the problem, not police misconduct.

    I could go on, but you've got my advice which is to see an attorney before doing anything. Even if you are not charged for DUI, you can be charged for resisting arrest and I suspect your defense will not be valid.

    Go to You Tube and search for "Don't tase me, bro!". While you're there search for other tasings by the police. Know that in almost all those tapes the police was in policy. You did worse than most of those and the cop pushed you in the back seat and locked you in? Lucky you.
    dear pro abuser and taser supporter...its obvious you are a man and have never been a WOMAN arrested at night in middle of the woods. thanks for your support and advice. its been extremely helpful. its nice to know there are lots of men out there who support police brutality...that's why it continues unquestioned.
  15. #15
    CdwJava is offline Senior Member
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    Quote Originally Posted by hoefinger View Post
    dear pro abuser and taser supporter...
    Tranq is hardly those things ... he is very thoughtful and far more supportive of the potential defendant than many of us are (for reasons I will let him explain to you should he choose to).

    What you describe as "police brutality" is a response to your own active and unlawful resistance to the officer's arrest. This resistance is a separate matter from the offense for which you were arrested and could still be charged ... though, i doubt it would be because if it were, then it WOULD look like a retaliatory prosecution if you went through with a complaint or claim against the officer and the agency.

    And Tranq is absolutely right - the officer could have used a Taser on you to gain compliance. The officer was also in the woods - alone - and dealing with a hysterical woman who was struggling with him. Inside the car was another person - a compatriot of the person with whom he was struggling, and possibly someone who could intercede on your behalf ... these things combined should have encouraged him to end the conflict quickly. Had he not been able to quickly subdue you and toss you in the car, he would have been well within his rights to have deployed his Taser. There is nothing more scary for a cop than to be outnumbered and dealing with a combative subject - even a woman.

    Contrary to popular belief, the cops don't have to play fair, and they do not have to use EQUAL force, only reasonable force.

    - Carl
    A Nor Cal Cop Sergeant

    "Make mine a double mocha ...
    And a croissant!"

    Seek justice,
    Love mercy,
    Walk humbly with your God

    -- Courageous, by Casting Crowns ... http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pkM-gDcmJeM

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