Punta Gorda police arrest woman on someone else's warrant, mom gets her out
Punta Gorda, Fla. -
It sounds like a movie script or maybe your personal nightmare... police arrest the wrong person ... you! A Southwest Florida woman says it happened to her in front of her 11 year old child!
Imagine going to the police station with your 11 year old to ask them to help you. Then, instead, you get arrested on a warrant intended for someone else who has the same, identical name.
"I was appalled when I found out that they arrested her in front of him," Daphne Springer said about her grandson watching her mother get arrested.
Last week Brandy Lowe was concerned about her mom because she couldn't get ahold of her for hours. So, Brandy and her 11 yr old son went to the Punta Gorda Police Department to report her missing. They then left. Lowe says a few minutes later the police called her back saying her mother was fine. When they got there, they arrested her right in front of her 11 year old son.
"They told him I was going to jail for 29 days and he started crying," said Lowe.
The Punta Gorda Police sent FOX4 a copy of a warrant for a Brandy Lee Lowe out of Leesburg, a town northwest of Orlando. "The first question I asked was where's Leesburg?" Lowe said.
The warrant is for a woman born in 1988, who is 5 feet 7 inches tall and who weighs 141 pounds. "The first thing I said was it's not my date of birth and that's not how tall I am," explained Lowe.
On the attached video are pictures of both Lowe's. The one from Charlotte County and the one from Leesburg. Charlotte County's Lowe is 5' 4" tall, Leesburg's Lowe is 5' 7" tall. In addition, the warrant says Leesburg's Lowe has a tattoo on her right ankle. Charlotte County's Lowe showed us her right ankle. It does not have a tattoo. "They said, 'this is you. it fits the description and you're under arrest for shoplifting in Leesburg'," said Charlotte County's Lowe.
She says she was devastated, that she's never been arrested for anything. "They took my mug shot, my fingerprints." She thought that would clear her, but it didn't. Instead her 11 year old son had to call family members from his own cell phone. Lowe's mother, Daphne Springer got the call and said, "No way. Brandy's not in jail. She doesn't steal, she doesn't lie, she doesn't do anything."
Brandy's mother then went to the Punta Gorda Police Department. "Apparently the officer told her there's only one Brandy Lee Lowe in the state of Florida," added Springer. "I thought, oh, okay, lemme see." So, she took matters into her own hands and got on her computer. "I did a Google search, that's all it took," Springer explained. When asked how long that took, she said. "I think about, uhhh, 30 seconds."
She found a mug shot of the Brandy Lee Lowe of Leesburg and couldn't believe she was able to do what the police apparently didn't do. Springer then went to the Charlotte County Jail and showed the mug shot to the clerk. When asked if they change their tune after she showed them the evidence, Springer said, "Yes. She looked a little shocked."
Lowe was released from jail five hours later but spent a total of over 12 hours in jail. FOX4 contacted the city and the Punta Gorda Police Department two days ago as well as Thursday but have not heard back yet.
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