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Police lose false arrest lawsuit

West Side woman awarded $300,000

November 18, 2001 | By Matt O'Connor, Tribune staff reporter.

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A federal jury has found that two Chicago police officers falsely arrested a
West Side woman after a dispute in her home in August 1998 and awarded
her $300,000 in damages.

The jury on Friday cleared the two, Officer Kevin Osborn and Sgt. Mark
Gibson, on other charges, including illegal entry and search, excessive force,
malicious prosecution and intentional infliction of emotional distress.

According to attorney Amber Miller, who represented Felicia Tolson, the


two Englewood Police District tactical officers had arrested and handcuffed Related Articles
a teenager on drug charges.

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But the teen escaped, leading the officers to search the neighborhood for
him. 2nd Suit Filed Over Ryan Harris
Charges
The plainclothes officers said a tip led them to the home of Tolson. They May 18, 1999
entered her home, but, according to Tolson, ignored her requests for
identification or a warrant and refused to leave. Chicago and police officers lose
An argument ensued, and Osborn said Tolson pushed him and arrested her case and $7.7 million for...
for aggravated battery, a felony. June 13, 2008

Tolson was held in custody for 30 hours, including in Cook County Jail, Man's False Arrest Suit Tossed Out
where she had worked at the time as a correctional officer. February 16, 2000

She later was acquitted of aggravated battery.


Suit Planned In Nicarico Case
At trial, Tolson said she suffered from post-traumatic stress syndrome and March 22, 1988
depression and quit her corrections job after being unable to work in the jail
because of the humiliating arrest, Miller said. Lawsuit Seeks Damages From Cops
In `False` Arrest
An economist testified that as a result of giving up her Cook County job,
September 25, 1992
Tolson would lose more than $1 million in wages during her life.

Jennifer Hoyle, a spokeswoman for the city's Law Department, said the city
may appeal the verdict. Find More Stories About

She questioned how the jury could have found the officers liable for Tolson's Malicious Prosecution
false arrest yet cleared them of malicious prosecution.
Hoyle said it also was unclear how the jury decided on $300,000 in
damages, significantly less than what Tolson sought.
Only the two officers were named as defendants in the lawsuit, but the city
represented the officers in court and would cover any damages paid, Hoyle
said.

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