|How do you prove a claim of False Arrest in Florida?|
How do you prove a claim of False Arrest in Florida?
An innocent juvenile spent 35 days in the Clay County Jail after three deputies failed check that they had the correct suspect based on a photo lineup. The correct suspect was another student at the high school with the same name. The three deputies involved have been disciplined. According to published reports, "The mistake wasn't discovered until the teen received court documents detailing the charges against him." Reports also indicate, "Authorities say investigators failed to confirm their suspect's identity with a photo lineup. They actually had been seeking another student at the same high school with the same name."
False Arrest Claims under 42 USC § 1983
The University of Chicago Law review notes, "Under § 1983, citizens may seek redress for violations of their constitutional rights by state or local officials,9 including police officers. The statute guarantees that “[e]very person who, under color of any statute, ordinance, regulation, custom or usage, of any State or
Territory . . . subjects . . . any . . . person . . . to the deprivation of any rights, privileges, or immunities secured by the Constitution and laws, shall be liable to the party injured.” A § 1983 action has two essential elements: that the alleged injury was committed by a person acting under color of state law, and that this conduct deprived the person of a right “secured by the Constitution and the laws” of the United States."
False Arrest Claims under Florida Law
The University of Chicago Law review also notes "the only difference between the federal § 1983 claim and the pendent state claim was the placement of the burden of proof—under Florida law, probable cause was an affirmative defense, while in the Eleventh Circuit, the “plaintiffs had the burden of demonstrating the absence of probable cause in order to succeed in their § 1983 claim.”"
If you have been the victim of a false arrest, please contact our office for a consultation.
Authored by: Jennifer Salter, Esquire
For the full report, please see: http://www.wcjb.com/local-news-state-news/2014/02/teen-spends-35-days-jail-after-mistaken-arrest