Login

Register | Forgot Your Password? | Close
Register | Forgot Your Password? | Close

SURPRISE, Ariz. -- A man is seeking $500,000 from an Arizona city for his arrest on a drunken driving charge even though a breath-alcohol test showed he hadn't consumed any alcohol.

Jessie Thornton was cited in a Dec. 7 traffic stop in the Phoenix suburb of Surprise, but the misdemeanor drunken driving charge was dismissed nearly two months later after a blood test revealed no signs of mind-altering drugs in his body.

In a precursor to a lawsuit, Thornton, who is black, filed a $500,000 notice of claim against the city in late April, alleging he is the victim of racial profiling and harassment by Surprise police.

The Surprise Police Department had no immediate comment Monday on Thornton's case.

Police say the 64-year-old retired firefighter had crossed a white roadway line, had blood shot eyes, acknowledged taking a prescription blood-pressure medication and swayed and struggled to keep his balance during a sobriety test.

Thornton's lawyer Marc Victor says his client's eyes were bloodshot because had just returned from swimming at a gym and that he was suffering from knee and hip problems at the time.

Police say Thornton yelled during the arrest but insisted throughout that he was sober.

A breath test showed Thornton's blood alcohol level to be 0.00.

An officer who is a drug recognition expert had concluded Thornton wasn't under the influence of drugs or alcohol.

Still, Thornton was cited for the misdemeanor charge, but the charge was eventually dismissed.

Associated Press,

share this story:
Attention KTAR.com Comment Users: We have recently changed our comments boards.
We would like you to be part of the conversation and The Voice of Arizona by logging in with your Facebook, Twitter, Google+ or Disqus account. Existing KTAR (Arizona Sports) account members will need to create a Disqus account or use one of the aforementioned social media logins. Thank you.
comments powered by Disqus

World Class Arizona

  • Dignity Health

    World Class People. World Class Company. Excellent care, delivered with compassion, for all in need.
  • CopperPoint Mutual Insurance Company

    SCF Arizona has a new name. They are now CopperPoint Mutual Insurance Company.
  • Taylor Morrison

    World Class People. World Class Company. We are a national home builder committed to building homes inspired by you.
  • Go Daddy

    World Class People. World Class Company. Go Daddy is a Fortune 100 "Best Companies to Work For."
  • Avnet

    World Class People. World Class Company. Here's information on a Fortune 500 company from Arizona.

Voice For A Better Arizona

  • Working For Arizona

    The business and economics of Arizona at the start of 2014 and looking forward.
  • Arizonans In Need

    Putting a focus on charities and organizations who provide help and/or need your help to fulfill their missions.
close

Share: