Woman files complaint against officer who arrested her at school

Rita Guzman, 25, arrested after parking on grass outside Dr. Edward L. Wingham Elementary School


CUTLER BAY, Fla. – A mother who was arrested Wednesday after she parked her car on the grass outside Dr. Edward L. Wingham Elementary School in Cutler Bay filed a complaint Friday against the Miami-Dade police officer who arrested her.

Rita Guzman, 25, was arrested on a charge of resisting an officer without violence after she refused to comply with the officer's orders, an arrest report said.

According to police, Guzman asked the officer, "Why are you being nasty?" and refused to hand him her driver's license.

A parent recorded the arrest, which shows the officer pulling Guzman from her car.

"Unfortunately, you're supposed to feel safe around an officer, but an officer like that doesn't belong in our community," Guzman said to reporters after she filed the complaint.

Guzman is wearing splints on both wrists for sprains and her arms are bruised after being yanked from her car by the officer outside the elementary school while waiting to pick up her daughter.

"I was on the phone, distracted, and the officer asked me to move. I was fine with that, but I didn't know where. Then it escalated and he was really aggressive with me," Guzman said.

On Friday morning, officers were back outside the school handing out citations to parents who were parked illegally.

A Local 10 News viewer and parent, whose child attends the school, said police have been handing out citations to parents every day, although there is limited parking availability for parents.

The woman said road work is being done in the area, and construction vehicles have been allowed to park on the school's grass.

"There is not enough parking here," Alex Montes, who recorded the incident, said. "And they put a whole bunch of no parking signs that were not here last year. Now what they do is wait for the parents every morning and every afternoon to give us tickets."

Montes said the principal of the school allowed him to park in the same spot where Guzman was arrested.

"The principal herself tells me to park on the grass," he said.

When asked about the pick-up procedure at the school, the principal told Local 10 News to speak to the school district.

Miami-Dade County Public Schools officials said parents are supposed to wait in the slow moving line to pick up their children or park at their own risk.

An investigation into the officer's actions could take up to six months.

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