LAPD facing lawsuit after arresting the wrong woman

Published: Feb. 23, 2022 at 9:34 AM EST
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LOS ANGELES (KCAL/KCBS) - A woman who said she was wrongfully arrested in California last year is suing the Los Angeles Police Department.

Bethany Farber said she spent nearly two weeks behind bars after she says authorities mistook her for a woman with the same name who had an outstanding warrant.

“This was an experience that no one should go through, especially a law-abiding citizen,” Farber said.

She was surrounded by her attorneys and family as she recounted what she calls “traumatic” and “life-changing” days when she was wrongfully arrested by the LAPD last April.

Farber was at Los Angeles International Airport on her way to Mexico when she was stopped by TSA and informed that there was a warrant out for her arrest in Texas.

“Now what’s interesting is at the time Ms. Farber is booked, the police do nothing to confirm whether or not this Bethany Farber is that Bethany Farber,” attorney Rodney Diggs said.

Farber’s attorneys said the warrant from Texas was for another woman named Bethany Farber.

“This Bethany Farber, from our understanding, already has a criminal history. LAPD could have checked the fingerprints, her birth date, social security number, or even a photo. They did none of that,” Diggs said.

Farber said that she repeatedly asked police to double check but that “they completely blew me off.”

While her family was trying to show authorities that this was a case of mistaken identity, Farber says her grandmother suffered a stress-induced stroke because of the arrest.

When she finally got out of jail after nearly two weeks, her grandmother passed away a couple of days later.

“I believe that I would’ve had more time with her if this situation didn’t happen. This has caused me a lot of distress in my life,” Farber said.

The lawsuit against the Los Angeles Police Department asks for monetary compensation, accountability and reform in the justice system.

“This is a case of negligence at its highest level and also a violation of Ms. Farber’s rights,” Diggs said.

Farber said that there are many people out there who are facing the same thing who don’t have anyone “advocating for them.”

Los Angeles Police Department officials say they cannot discuss pending litigation.

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