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False arrest leaves contractor homeless

MIKE McGEE | 12/7/2015, 10:23 a.m.
“You have been in jail, I believe, long enough to probably have served a two- or three-year sentence,” Garland resident ...
Contractor Seroy Flowers spent almost a year in the Dallas County Jail for a crime both his defense attorney and an assistant district attorney determined was fabricated. Mike McGee

“… Officers observed Catechis … having a verbal altercation with suspects Seroy Flowers and Tracie Garrett regarding [Flowers’] vehicle …”

The report also details what led to the arrest of both Flowers and Garrett.

“Officers observed Catechis pull out a can of Mace and warn [the suspects] to back away.

“[Security officer] Amburn approached the suspects and informed them to back away from Catechis. At this time suspect Flowers pushed Officer Amburn, causing him to stumble backwards.

“Officer Amburn regained his balance without falling and grabbed suspect Flowers by the shoulders to avoid falling to the ground.”

The report went on to say, Flowers hit Amburn in his mouth with his elbow while Garrett tried to remove the officer’s gun from its holster.

Flowers angrily denied the claims in the report. He explained that someone pushed him from behind as he called police.

“I dropped my phone, I turned, grabbed the person who pushed me and I snatched him around and myself around,” he remarked as he demonstrated what physically occurred. “When he ran in to me, he pushed me backwards. So when he pushed me backwards I fell against the van.

“Now we go to tussling. So he’s trying to grab me on the neck and I noticed that it’s not the tow truck driver, it’s a security guard … I’m knocking his hands away, like he’s trying to grab me on the neck …”

However, Flowers insisted that Garrett never touched the officer’s gun.

The arrest

The responding police officers questioned the security officers, Flowers and other witnesses. At that time, the DPD officers declined to arrest anyone. They also informed Flowers that the security personnel had nothing to do with the towing, and that he would have to address the issue with the towing firm.

Upset but accepting of the situation, Flowers said the police left and he returned to his apartment to sleep.

Within the incident report, there is a note recorded at the time of 12:50 a.m. on Oct. 20, 2014, that remarks, “Caller is upset because PD did not make a report.” According to Flowers, this is the moment that the security officer called a police command sergeant with his altered story.

Around 2 a.m. one of the original responding officers, J. McDaniel, was at Flowers’ door.

Flowers remembered the somber expression on the police officer’s face as he entered the apartment.

“He said, ‘Well, Mr. Flowers, I’m here to arrest you.’ I said ‘Huh?’” the contractor voiced.

Flowers said the police officer stated he and his partner didn’t want to arrest him, but Amburn had called the police station and altered the story to include Flowers having a gun and added a group of hostile Black people to the scene.

Amburn is a former police officer from outside of Dallas, who was fired in 2012 from the Saint Jo Police Department after receiving multiple complaints from several citizens for excessive use of force and false arrests, according to previous news reports. The reports also indicate at least two additional times in which he received complaints based on his behavior as a police officer in other cities.