A pregnant Ohio woman was wrongly arrested and wound up spending five days in jail plus enduring an eight-month-long court battle before police realized they made a mistake.
23-year-old Ashley Brown says she was pulling into her mother’s driveway late last year when two cop cars blocked her in. Police told Brown, in front of her 13-year-old sister, that she was under arrest for trafficking drugs, and at eight months pregnant, Brown was brought to jail.
Brown says she vehemently denied the allegations against her - which included claims that she had driven a friend to traffic drugs - but officers didn’t believe her.
“I thought I was going to prison when I was innocent and I wouldn’t be able to see my daughter,” Brown said. “I mean, there are no words to describe that.”
After a grueling eight-month battle, the charges against Brown were finally dismissed, and the Rittman Police Department admitted that they meant to arrest a different blonde Ashley.
“There are a lot of Ashleys who are blond and there are a lot of Ashley Browns in the world and in Wayne County or Medina County,” Brown said. “So they obviously didn’t do their research very well.”
Gary Hubbard, Medina County Drug Task Force director, admitted to the mistake but refused to go into detail about how it happened.
“We had a name and we were confident enough to have indicted her,” Hubbard said. “Then more information came out to say that’s not who it was. We don’t want the public to think we’re out there just charging anybody. It’s very rare, and we work very hard to make sure this doesn’t happen at all. The last thing we want to do is charge the wrong person.”
Brown says that she was initially discouraged because so many people, including her own attorney, didn’t believe that she was innocent at first, but thankfully, justice has been served.