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Davidson News

Pregnant Woman to Sue the City for Wrongful Accusation Caused by Facial Recognition Technology

Discover how facial recognition technology led to the wrongful arrest of a pregnant woman.

After being wrongfully accused, a pregnant woman sues the city and a police officer. (Photo: Google)

Woodruff, eight months pregnant, files a lawsuit against the city for wrongful arrest on robbery and carjacking charges.

According to an article published by AP News, a Detroit woman, Porcha Woodruff, plans to sue the city and a police officer after being falsely arrested for robbery and carjacking when she was eight months pregnant. The arrest was based on facial recognition technology, which has also led to lawsuits from three other Black Michigan residents. 

Woodruff, a 32-year-old Black woman, plans to sue the city and a police officer after being confronted by six police officers at her home while preparing her children for school. The case against her was eventually dismissed due to insufficient evidence.

Woodruff experienced emotional distress due to the arrest, particularly concerning her complicated pregnancy. She intends to sue the city for the wrongful arrest.

The American Civil Liberties Union of Michigan is urging the Detroit Police Department to halt the use of facial recognition technology, citing this as the third instance of wrongful arrest in the city due to this technology, prompting Woodruff’s decision to sue the city.

Michael Oliver, another Black man, had sue the city in 2021, asserting that a false arrest due to facial recognition technology in 2019 caused him to lose his job.

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Critics argue that this technology disproportionately misidentifies people of color compared to white individuals.

In an article published by ABC 17 News, Porcha Woodruff’s lawsuit emphasizes that facial recognition has demonstrated a higher rate of misidentification among Black citizens and proceeds to sue the city, asserting that it cannot be solely relied upon as probable cause for arrests.

Phil Mayor, senior staff attorney at the ACLU of Michigan, expressed concern over the Detroit Police Department’s continued use of flawed facial recognition technology for arrests despite its known consequences. He believes that Porcha Woodruff’s case highlights the urgent need to sue the city over this issue and hold law enforcement accountable.

The Wayne County prosecutor’s office claims that the arrest warrant was justified based on the facts, while the case was dismissed due to the complainant’s absence in court. Despite this, Woodruff remains determined to sue the city and the police officer responsible for her false arrest.

Detroit Police Chief James E. White acknowledged the seriousness of the allegations and assured that the department is thoroughly investigating the matter. Woodruff’s decision to sue the city and the officer involved further emphasizes the importance of addressing these issues promptly.

Woodruff believes that her advanced pregnancy influenced how she was treated by the police. She hopes her lawsuit will prompt changes in how law enforcement employs technology, preventing similar incidents from happening to others. Her decision to sue the city is a step towards seeking justice for herself and advocating for systemic reform.

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