Local

He says he was sober when police arrested him for being drunk. Now he’s suing over it

A man says cops arrested and accused him of being drunk in public, despite being sober, and now he is suing Myrtle Beach for his incarceration.

This week, Robert Logan Wilder filed suit against the Myrtle Beach Police Department, the city and two police officers.

On April 3, 2017, Wilder claims he left his job at a mattress store and went to an area to pick up scrap metal near 7th Avenue North. He says he had state permission to pick up discarded metal and that it was his side job.

Wilder briefly parked in a restaurant parking lot while searching for metal, the suit states. Moments after returning to his truck, two police officers on bicycles approached.

Wilder told the officers he was picking up the metal and provided his driver’s license when they asked, according to the filing.

The officers told Wilder to exit the vehicle because he was being arrested for public intoxication. In the filing Wilder says he did not use any drugs or alcohol. Days later he took a drug test that came back clean, according to the suit.

One of the officers also said Wilder “reeked of marijuana” despite the fact no drugs were found during a search, the filing states. Wilder told the officer that he was wearing cologne and the officer said he could “sober up” in jail.

Wilder was in jail for four hours after his arrest, was required to post bond and had his mugshot posted online, the suit contends. He hired an attorney and the public intoxication charge was dismissed in August 2017.

Wilder was denied a job at a bank because he had a criminal record and had to explain his arrest to his current employer, the suit contends.

The suit claims the city and police violated Wilder’s due process and there was malicious prosecution. Wilder asks for an unspecified amount of damages.

City Spokesman Mark Kruea said he is not familiar with the lawsuit, but the city does not typically comment on pending litigation.

Alex Lang is the True Crime reporter for The Sun News covering the legal system and how crime impacts local residents. He says letting residents know if they are safe is a vital role of a newspaper. Alex has covered crime in Detroit, Iowa, New York City, West Virginia and now Horry County.
  Comments