San Francisco Public Defender Files Complaint After Wrongful Arrest, Police Chief Apologizes - PINAC News
Connect
To Top

San Francisco Public Defender Files Complaint After Wrongful Arrest, Police Chief Apologizes

Two weeks ago, the story and video of a San Francisco public defender arrested for protecting her client’s Fifth Amendment rights went viral.

After deputy public defender Jami Tillotson blocked police from talking to her client and demanding he pose for photos, San Francisco Police Sergeant Brian Stansbury told Tillotson, “If you continue with this, I will arrest you for resisting arrest.”

Tillotson said, “Please do,” and Stansbury proceeded to wrongfully arrest a deputy public defender.

Now Tillotson has filed a complaint against the six SFPD officers that arrested her. An excerpt of her statement is below.

Jami Tillotson’s complaint

Following Tillotson’s “unreasonably rough” arrest, she was led to a “secure zone” inside the Hall of Justice, as a newly released video shows an officer telling a man recording Tillotson’s arrest that he must turn off his camera because they’re in a “secure zone.” That video is below.

The video of Tillotson’s arrest was seen 1.4 million times on YouTube and the charge against her has been dropped. Police Chief Greg Suhn gave a half-hearted public apology during a meeting of San Francisco’s Police Commission as he attempted to defend Sgt. Brian Stansbury’s behavior.

“While I appreciate Chief Suhr’s apology, I am concerned that he continues to support Sgt. Brian Stansbury’s actions,” Tillotson said in a statement. “My client, a young African American man, was left without the benefit of advice of counsel. The right to counsel is not a formality. It is a shield that protects ordinary people against intimidation, bullying, and overreach by law enforcement.”Tillotson has not commented on whether she would file suit against the SFPD.

More in Citizen Journalism