So, last summer I was driving home from a networking event. I reached a red light. It turned green and as I began to go a cop on a bicycle pulled in front of my car and motioned to the right with his arm. He looked kind of pissed and I didn't want to get in trouble or anything so I turned right, which is what I assumed he wanted me to do. After all, I couldn't move forward into the intersection since I would have hit him. I go about half a block down the street that he was motioning towards and then two other cops on bicycles ride in front of me and I have to slam down on my breaks to avoid hitting them. The cop who previously motioned for me to turn right then ran up to my car, opened my door(it was unlocked, stupid, I know), put my car into park, and took my keys out of the ignition. He then ordered me to get out of the car.
He told me he was writing me a ticket for going the wrong way down a one way street and for disobeying a police officer. Now, I was pretty freaked out at this point, since I was being extra careful to look for one way signs since it was late at night and I wasn't familiar with the area. I asked if there was a sign and the officer lied and said there were signs on both sides of the street. In reality, there was only one one way sign and it was behind a tree, so it was even an extra cautious driver wouldn't have been able to tell it was a one way street.
Anyway, after an illegal search, the officer then started asking me questions about how much I had to drink that night. I stupidly told the truth, that I had a couple of drinks earlier but I've just been drinking water for the past three hours. He eventually asked me if I was willing to do a field sobriety test. I refused and he told me he was going to arrest me for DUI. I asked to do the breathalyzer at the station and I blew a 0.00 so he had no choice but to drop the DUI charge. Unfortunately, they towed my car and I had to wait in the lobby until the morning for the tow yard to open and then I had to walk two hours to the tow yard and pay $140 to get my car out.
I still had the two traffic tickets, but those eventually got dismissed because the officer didn't show up for court. I eventually got a copy of the police report and I was a little shocked how peppered with lies it was. He wrote that my breath had a strong odor of alcohol, that my eyes were red, and that I couldn't stand up without falling over. How does he have the audacity to lie about me not being able to stand up straight and then later on in the same report he states that I blew a 0.00? He also said that I admitted to not paying enough attention to my driving when I went down the one way street. I was being extra careful that night, there's no way in hell I would have said that I wasn't paying enough attention to my driving.
I guess I'm only out $140 bucks for the tow, but I'm still a little pissed. I mean, he told me that he's never had a suspect blow a 0.00 before, but I wonder how many suspects he arrested who were too scared to take the breathalyzer? I bet he made up stuff about them having signs of intoxication as well. I did try to contact a civil rights attorney and they said that it seems clear that my rights were violated, but unfortunately since I didn't miss any work I can't really show any damages other than the $140 tow. Would there be any advantage in filing a complaint with the police department or would that likely just get thrown out? Is there any way to recover the $140 for the tow?