A man who was mistakenly arrested in December after an officer mistook donut glaze for methamphetamine filed a lawsuit last week against the City of Orlando and the company who provides local law enforcement with drug testing kits.
Daniel Rushing was stopped by Cpl. Shelby Riggs-Hopkins for speeding and failing to come to a complete stop. During the stop, the officer noticed what was described as “a rock like substance on the floor.”
Riggs-Hopkins tested the substance twice with a roadside drug testing kit manufactured by The Safariland Group. Both times the substance tested positive for methamphetamine, but there was only one problem. Rushing claims the substance wasn’t meth. In fact, it was bits of donut glaze that had fallen on the floor.
Nonetheless, Rushing was arrested on drug charges, as well as possession of a firearm, but posted bond and was released 10 hours later.
Several weeks later, the charges were dropped after additional testing by the Florida Department of Law Enforcement showed that the substance wasn’t meth after all.
Rushing, who is seeking more than $15,000 in damages, claims in the lawsuit that Riggs-Hopkins was not properly trained and should have known the field tests aren’t always reliable.
Rushing said his mug shot is now permanently on the internet and he has suffered embarrassment, humiliation and emotional harm since the incident.
[ Orlando Sentinel ]
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