by: Mark Winne Updated:
ATLANTA,None - An attorney for a woman mistakenly jailed for almost two months told Channel 2 Action News late Friday evening he has sent the city of Atlanta notice of his legal claims against
it after his law partner and wife said earlier this week she intends to sue the city for her client's wrongful arrest.
Culpepper told Winne she had contacted
According to records, Culpepper was arrested by APD under her real name, although the incident report lists her as Teresa Gilbert, and detained for 53 days in the Fulton County Jail.
The Fulton County District Attorney's office filed a criminal complaint against Culpepper charging her with aggravated assault.
Merchant said it was not until Culpepper's public defender at the time
"She had medical
Culpepper's attorneys told Winne about the simple steps they claim could have prevented this whole
"Because she never saw the victim, the victim was not able to make the correct identification, (and) she was forced to spend 53 days in the
John Merchant indicated a major concern is the preliminary steps in the case once Culpepper was arrested
"If, in fact, they had taken Teresa to the hospital to see the
"It was as easy as
An emailed statement from Fulton County District Attorney Paul Howard's
The statement reads:
"After investigating this matter thoroughly and discussing it carefully with the Atlanta Police Department, we have concluded that the wrong person was arrested. On the day of the incident, a description of the perpetrator was provided to police by the victim. The police identification was based in part on a prior incident that had occurred the same day with Ms. Culpepper. This incident and the fact that both of the women in question had the same first name and lived in the same police beat led the officer to believe Ms. Culpepper was responsible… Unfortunately, the officer never presented a picture or any form of identification to [the victim] after the arrest confirming the identity of Ms. Culpepper. Consequently, the mistake was not detected by the police or the District Attorney's Office until both the victim and Ms. Culpepper were present in court."
Culpepper said it has been difficult to settle
"She's doing good. She's trying to get her life back together. She's trying to pick up the pieces," said Merchant.
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