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Westchester Man Falsely Arrested Due To Mistaken Identity Plans To Sue

A man arrested in Mount Vernon plans to sue the city and police.
A man arrested in Mount Vernon plans to sue the city and police. Photo Credit: The Office of Lauren P. Raysor

A Westchester man who alleges he was falsely arrested for the sale and possession of drugs is planning a massive lawsuit targeting multiple law enforcement agencies.

Attorney Lauren P. Raysor announced that she had filed a complaint on behalf of Mount Vernon resident Gordon Tarrant, who was arrested in a drug sweep two years ago.

The lawsuit cites the City of Mount Vernon and Westchester County Police Departments and members of the Westchester County District Attorney’s Office and Mount Vernon Police Officer Carmelo Antonini as responsible for the arrest.

On April 26, 2018, Tarrant was in his Mount Vernon apartment when officers from the Mount Vernon and Westchester County police departments knocked on his door, identifying themselves as “parole, probation and pardon services.”

Raysor said that when Tarrant answered the door, the officers demanded he drop the phone he was on, threw him against the wall, and handcuffed him. When asked about a warrant for his arrest, one was allegedly never provided.

Tarrant was transported to the Mount Vernon Police Department following his arrest, where he was booked on charges that include bail jumping, criminal possession of a controlled substance, and criminal sale of a controlled substance, Raysor said.

All of those charges were later dismissed by the District Attorney’s Office, though Tarrant spent hours in jail and appeared in court nearly two dozen times before being cleared.

According to Raysor, Tarrant “is seeking damages resulting from violations of his rights to be free from an unreasonable search and seizure; violation of his rights to Due Process of Law; violation of his New York State constitutional rights; physical pain and suffering; emotional trauma and suffering, including fear, embarrassment, humiliation, emotional distress, frustration, extreme inconvenience and anxiety; and loss of liberty.

“Police Officer Antonini, among others, and the Westchester County Police Department, together with the Westchester County District Attorney’s office, conspired to imprison a man and violate his civil and constitutional rights,” Raysor said while announcing the lawsuit. “The officers and the DA’s office need to be held responsible for this miscarriage of justice.”

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