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Cops Make Hay From Bad Busts, Woman Says

CHICAGO (CN) - A woman claims she fell prey to one of a group Chicago cops who make bogus arrests to earn overtime pay from court appearances. She says the officer who arrested her has resigned to avoid "criminal prosecution" for unjust DUI arrests.

In her federal complaint, Clinton Ware claims Officer Joe Parker pulled her over in 2008 for no reason. She says Parker made "false and incomplete police reports" for her arrest and prosecution, and that the charges were dropped.

Ware claims that certain Chicago Police Officers have a history of making false arrests because they get overtime pay to attend court, "regardless of the arrests' validity."

She claims that in 2005, six of the top eight DUI writers in the state were "midnight traffic enforcement officers in the City of Chicago." And she says these officers refused to have cameras in their vehicles.

One of the "most prolific" DUI writers was placed on administrative leave due to investigations by Internal Affairs Division and Cook County State's Attorney, according to the complaint.

Joe Parker ranked eighth in the state in number of DUI citations; he has resigned "as part of a deal to avoid criminal prosecution" by the state's attorney, the complaint states.

Ware claims city policies have "encouraged overtime abuse" and false arrests, because the city allows officers to earn overtime in court, does not limit the amount of overtime an officer is allowed, removes court sergeants from DUI hearings and does not have a system to keep track of its officers' wrongful arrests.

She demands damages from the city and from Parker for false arrest and imprisonment, illegal search and seizure, malicious prosecution and emotional distress.

She is represented by John Erickson of the Civil Rights Center.

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