PORTLAND, OREGON – A Portland jury has awarded a woman $82,000, after she was arrested when asking a police officer for a business card.
The woman, Shei’Meka Newmann, had sued the Portland police department, after she had watched the arrest of a man in 2009, questioned the arrest, asked an officer for a business card, and was arrested herself, The Oregonian reported.
“I think that police need to be reminded that it’s part of their job to de-escalate and defuse situations,” juror Chris Bolles told the paper after the trial Thursday. Jurors also said it would have taken just a few seconds for the officer to give Newmann his card.
Newmann had thought the arrest of the man, at a Portland light-rail station, was rough, and had sought the identities of the officers involved. But when she asked for a business card and tried to read an officer’s name on his uniform, she was arrested, the paper reported.