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Woman Sues Broward Sheriff, Former Deputies for False Arrest

Sun Sentinel
The Associated Press
Posted February 27 2007, 10:32 PM EST

FORT LAUDERDALE -- A woman filed a lawsuit against Broward County Sheriff Ken Jenne and two former detectives Tuesday, alleging they falsely arrested her on armed robbery charges.

The lawsuit filed by Jaye Master follows a lengthy investigation that began in 2003 about allegations that deputies systematically falsified crime reports, marking dozens of cases solved by attributing them to people who did not or could not have committed them.

The two deputies named in the lawsuit, Christian Zapata and Shane Campbell, also were involved in the investigation.

Zapata no longer works for the department and Campbell was suspended without pay, sheriff's spokesman Elliot Cohen said.

Master, who is suing for false arrest and false imprisonment and malicious prosecution, is seeking compensatory damages for "emotional and physical distress and trauma,'' damage to her reputation, fees to seal her record and attorney's fees.

Zapata and Campbell arrested and charged Master in May 2004 with armed burglary of a dwelling, grand theft with a firearm and grand theft "all without just cause for such arrest and prosecution,'' the lawsuit said.

She spent 30 days in jail, lost income, had to pay for legal expenses and a foreclosure action was initiated on her house, her attorney, Bradford Cohen, said in a statement. The lawsuit also alleges the former deputies failed to show up for court hearings, thus prolonging Master's incarceration.

The state attorney's office later dropped the charges due to lack of evidence, he said.

"We intend on taking the sheriff's deposition and finding out once and for all if anyone ordered detectives or deputies to clear cases by filing police reports they knew to be false,'' Cohen said in a statement.

Sheriff's spokesman Elliot Cohen said they have not had an opportunity to review the lawsuit.

A telephone listing for Zapata was not available and Campbell had an unpublished number.

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