It has just come out this week two Coral Springs Police officers lied under oath and in their police reports of an incident in that happened on October 4, 2011. 60 year old Susan Mait had stopped her car on Royal Palm Road due to a tire blow out and was needing a tow. Coral Springs officer Derek Fernandes pulled up behind her to see what was the problem with her vehicle as she was blocking traffic. A backup officer, Nicole Stasnek, showed up shortly thereafter. Mait told the officer she was calling GEICO to help arrange the tow as she had roadside assistance with them. The incident ended with Mait spending the night in jail charged with a felony and DUI and two police officers filing false police reports.
Fortunate for Mait, she kept her cell phone on during the incident and the GEICO agent recorded the 17 minute encounter with police. In fact, the cell phone fell to the floor as Mait was pulled from her vehicle by the police.
Things quickly got testy with this exchange:
Mait: “Did you not see me on the phone?”
Stasnek: “Did you not see this uniform I have on? Don’t give me any s— right now. Give me your f—ing driver’s license.”
What is recorded via Mait’s cell phone is a completely different account from the official police report filed by both Stasnek and Fernandes. The recording proves Stasnek was being verbally abusive to Mait and did not warn her she was about to be arrested. The recording also shows both officers working to get their stories straight for their reports. One of the last audio recorded had Fernandes laughing, “I didn’t hear tha. In my statement, I’ll say I didn’t hear that…Don’t worry, I will put everything I heard beforehand.”
The officers charged Mait with felony obstruction and DUI. In fact, a toxicology test of Mait only showed Wellbutrin in her system and would not have impaired her so that charge was eventually dropped. Eventually the felony obstruction charge was dropped as well only when the recording became known to the police department when Mait hired an attorney to go after the officers.