A mother of four was jailed for five months Pasco County, Florida, after a deputy falsely claimed her vitamin were the prescription opioid Oxycodone.
Rebecca Shaw recalled the hell that the Pasco County Sheriff’s Office put her through to WTVT:
It felt like my whole life was over. It was terrible. My kids were devastated. I was away for five months. I cried constantly.
The incident began when a Pasco County Sheriff’s Office deputy pulled up behind Shaw who ran out of gas. Instead of offering Shaw assistance, the deputy asked to search her car.
During his warrantless search of her car, the deputy found some of Shaw’s vitamins.
Shaw recalled what the deputy said:
He said, “They don’t look like vitamins. They look like Oxycodone.”
The deputy used field drug test kit that reportedly gave a false positive, which happens often with field kits when testing items such as oregano, chocolate, and cough medicine, noted WTVT.
Shaw insisted her pills were vitamins, but the deputy arrested, booked, and charged her with trafficking Oxycodone.
Shaw said she was not able to pay her $5,000 bail to get out of jail:
It was scary being in there and having a public defender that didn’t believe me.
After five months, Shaw’s husband came up with the bail money, but it took another seven months for Florid’a crime lab to confirm the pills were vitamins. The false charges were finally dropped.
Shaw’s attorney Patrick LeDuc told WTVT:
He does the field drug test and because it tests positive, nothing else mattered. It didn’t matter she had no prior record, it didn’t matter she was out of gas.
Despite the failure of field drug kits, police keep using them and innocent Americans are charged and jailed..
They’re putting innocent people in jail and ruining people’s lives.