Another citizen settled with San Mateo for false arrest and police officer falsifying police report
Original post made by Lurker, another community, on Jan 28, 2011
I recalled reading about a similar experience a citizen named Steve White had with the San Mateo DA and sheriff's office on a Topix forum.
Here's what White wrote:
"..let me tell you a few things about San Mateo County.
First, a deputy there filed a false report, a report falsely accusing me of a crime, when he arrested me at the Scott Peterson trial.
I was holding up a sign advertising my web page, and the web page is critical of law enforcement,(in another local county, Alameda) and Deputy Mark Dowdy, who was in charge of courthouse security at the time, arrested me at the request of Peter Shaplen, the guy who was the head of media for the event.
My arrest was completley illegal, becuase there was no rule against signs at the trial, only signs referring to Peterson. But my sign had nothing to do with that.
So, knowing he had no basis for arresting me, Dowdy lied, claiming I was trying to start a fight with the TV cameramen who were present. To do that, he had to flat out lie about what I said and did.
After my charges were dropped, because the TV guys who are about a thousand times smarter than Dowdy, would not back him up,(they did not want to perjure themselves, knowing there were dozens of cameras which could show the truth) I sued San Mateo County.
After using every excuse possible to keep Dowdy from giving a video deposition,(for example, that he might go undercover as a narcotics officer some time in the future, and if I showed the video on the WEB, that would put his life in danger. This was from a guy who repeatedly stuck his face in front of the camera at the Peterson trial, which was one of the biggest media events in all human history, in terms of number of people seeing video from it particularly) the County finally paid me $5,000 for false arrest.
The other deputies, some of them anyway, knew Dowdy had lied in his arrest report, and so they did their best to keep me from getting a copy of the report, even though the state law says I was entitled to it. Finally, some naive person in the office, who did not know any better, got me a copy of the report. I hope they did not get in any trouble for it.
So, that's my experience of the San Mateo County Sheriff's Department.
1. Deputy arrests me illegally.
2. Deputy lies in report to support illegal arrest.
3. Fellow deputies lie to me to prevent me getting copy of police report. Violation of state law.
4. Deputy uses phony excuses to avoid giving deposition.
5. County pays me $5,000 of your tax dollars to settle lawsuit.
Wake up, San Mateo County.
But I guess if having your Sheriff arrested in a brothel founded on white slavery is not enough to wake some people up, nothing will."