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$307,142 Awarded For Florida False Arrest And Malicious Prosecutions

Florida residents Noel Rivera, Mam Asad, and Tony Garcia (plaintiffs) brought action against County of Miami Dade Police for Fourth and Fifth Amendment violations when they were falsely arrested and detained, largely without bail, for a 2000 incident in which they did not participate. Defendant Sgt, Sedano offered them each $30,000. A jury awarded them $307,142 collectively.

Criminal arrestee Shalresia Thomlin posted bond and was lawfully released in 2000. When bondsmen presumed that she wouldn't appear for court, they forced her off the road at gunpoint, seriously beating the vehicle's driver, and abducted her. After evidence lacking suspect identification by Sgt. Sedano's employee, Detective Ares, the plaintiffs were charged with armed robbery and various other felony actions and held for up to 33 days without bail. When no witness identified them, the State dropped all charges.

A jury awarded Rivera $83,432, Asad $128,910, and Garcia $94,800 for constitutional violations, finding Sgt. Sedano guilty of false arrest and malicious prosecution. The jury found that all but the false arrest was handled in good faith by Sedano. See: Rivera v. Miami Dade County, Case No.'s 03 11431 CA 20; 03 11425 CA 20; 03 11428 CA 20; FJVR ref. No. 07:3 41 (Fla. Oct. 4, 2006).

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Related legal case

Rivera v. Miami Dade County