Justices Side With Bella Vista Officer After False Arrest

Apr 7, 2016

Arkansas Supreme Court

A split Arkansas Supreme Court says a Bella Vista police officer doesn't have to face trial after arresting the wrong woman on an outstanding warrant.

Officer Travis Trammell claimed there was no intent to commit false imprisonment, and that he should be immune from the lawsuit.

Trammell claimed that, while checking on a report of gunfire, dispatchers told him a woman at the scene was wanted on a warrant in Elkins. After the woman objected, Trammell re-checked with the dispatcher, who told him the warrant was good.

The warrant was for another woman with a similar name.

A lower court questioned whether Trammell practiced due diligence. In an opinion released Thursday, justices voted 7-2 to grant Trammell immunity, with two justices saying the woman should have recourse against those responsible.