Woman files lawsuit against Miami-Dade Police Department for 'false arrest'

Dyma Loving claims officers violated her civil rights during March 5 incident

MIAMI-DADE COUNTY, Fla. – A South Florida woman has filed a lawsuit against Miami-Dade County, the Miami-Dade Police Department and Miami-Dade police officers Alejandro Giraldo and J.F. Calderon following her arrest last month, her attorney announced Wednesday.

"Things have to change and you just can't change it if you let things go," Dyma Loving said. 

According to a Miami-Dade Police Department incident report, Loving and Adrianna Green were walking past a man's home on Southwest 201st Street March 5 when the man, identified as Frank Tumm, called Green a "whore."

Green told police she grabbed a plant from Tumm's yard and threw it at him, at which time Tumm grabbed a shotgun, pointed it at both women and threatened to shoot them.

According to a supplemental incident report, Loving was "acting belligerent and would not obey commands." Police said Loving was "upset, very irate and uncooperative."

"I expected them to come, get our statement, you know, go get his statement, get his gun, arrest him, you know, for threatening us, you know, and I don't know, it completely went the opposite way," Loving told Local 10 News shortly after her arrest.

Police said Loving continued screaming at officers after being asked to stop and was arrested. 

Cellphone video of Loving's arrest went viral on social media, prompting an internal investigation by the Miami-Dade Police Department. 

In the video, Loving can be heard arguing with officers, one of whom tells her that she needs to be "corrected."

"Why do I have to be corrected when my life was just threatened and my daughter's (inaudible)?" Loving asks.

After Loving repeatedly tells the officers not to touch her, she is pulled to the ground by several officers.

One of the officers appeared to put her in a headlock to get her to the ground.

"I wanted to call my kids," Loving tells officers. "My phone is dead."

The woman recording the video can be heard asking officers, "Why are you doing that?"

As the woman recording the video asks one of the officers for his name, he tells her, "Ma'am, I'm sorry. We're busy right now."

The report stated that Giraldo was the officer who took Loving to the ground.

"I've completely lost faith in the police," Loving said. "I mean, I don't really know what to say about that. Who do I call when I'm in trouble?"

Miami-Dade police Chief Juan Perez said an immediate inquiry was initiated upon being made aware of the video. He said the officer was relieved of duty and of his role as a field-training officer.

Tumm was later arrested on two counts of aggravated assault with a deadly weapon.

Loving's lawsuit lists multiple claims against the parties named in the complaint, including false arrest, false imprisonment, malicious prosecution, negligent hiring and retention, negligent failure to train and supervise, deprivation of civil rights by excessive use of force, battery, conspiracy and intentional infliction of emotional distress, among other claims.

One of Loving's attorneys, Justin A. Moore, stated in a news release Wednesday that both officers involved in his client's arrest are still employed by the Miami-Dade Police Department and have not been charged with a crime.

"What we have is not only clear evidence of malicious prosecution and overuse of excessive force, but also false imprisonment and false arrest," he said. 

Loving's attorneys are calling for the Miami-Dade State Attorney's Office to "fulfill the duty of seeking equal justice for all people in the Miami-Dade area without condition."

They are also calling for both officers to be fired from the Police Department. 

"We must remember that Miss Loving is the one who called authorities. She is the one who was the victim of a crime from a civilian in her neighborhood and just wanted to feel safe," attorney Christina Roye said. 

Perez released a statement Wednesday afternoon, saying he is unable to comment on pending litigation, but he "can assure the community that the MDPD remains committed to the highest performance standards, ethical conduct and truthfulness in all relationships. We strive daily to practice our core values of Integrity, Respect, Service, and Fairness, which includes treating all persons in a dignified and courteous manner, and exhibiting understanding of ethnic and cultural diversity. This is demonstrated by the fact that beginning in 2015, we proactively initiated training on the topic of Fair and Impartial Policing for our officers, implemented a comprehensive body-worn camera program in 2016, and continuously partner with various community groups, all in an effort to foster trust and understanding between community and police, and these are just to name a few.

"While I acknowledge that a few incidents such as those recently highlighted may negatively affect the public's perception, what is often overlooked, unfortunately, is the vast amounts of positive interactions that our officers have with the public we serve on a daily basis while doing a very difficult job. We are a resource for our community; if and when we ever fall short of our mission, we hold ourselves accountable because we are a professional law enforcement organization."

About the Authors:

Amanda Batchelor is the Digital Executive Producer for Local10.com.

Terrell Forney joined Local 10 News in October 2005 as a general assignment reporter. He was born and raised in Cleveland, Ohio, but a desire to escape the harsh winters of the north brought him to South Florida.