By now, you've surely seen Police Women of Broward County
, the Cops
-style TV show authorized by past Broward Sheriff Al Lamberti. The show had its share of problems when defendants claimed that they'd been unfairly arrested for pure entertainment value.
The public defender's office handled 11 such cases; most were dismissed or charges were reduced; two are still pending.
Now, one of those arrested during filming, 26-year-old Devin Matthews, is taking it up a notch and suing in federal court.
In an episode that was filmed in February 2011 and aired later that spring, officer Andrea Penoyer and a partner drive during broad daylight to back up officers who are beside a parked car in a residential neighborhood in Pompano Beach, arresting a man on marijuana charges. Suddenly, another man -- Matthews -- comes out of a neighboring house, shouting.
See Also: Police Women of Broward County: Al Lamberti's Legacy
The video cuts to Penoyer in a studio interview later explaining what happened. "As we're attempting to complete this drug investigation, some loudmouth guy comes from one of the houses. He's yelling; he's making a scene," she says. The video cuts back to the incident, in which Penoyer walks up toward the sidewalk, where two male officers are speaking with Matthews.
The video shows the back of Penoyer's head and, beyond her, one of the male officers moving his left arm upward toward Matthews. Then it cuts to back to Penoyer in the studio, who boasts, "All of a sudden, he starts taking a swing. This is a mistake. This is a 50,000-volt mistake." More »