has released new details, including a police report and surveillance video, after a controversial arrest of a Lakewood woman at the end of March.
Officials released the police report from the incident, in which Jessica Ferrato was arrested at the West 117th RTA station in the early morning hours of March 30.
Ferrato says she was taking the Rapid home from the Cleveland International Film Festival when an RTA officer asked for her RTA pass. Ferrato says she showed him her pass, but the officer asked for it again. She says she complied as she was walking toward the parking lot. According to Ferrato, the officer told her to come back, but she kept walking to her car. That's when she says he blocked her from going any further.
The police report released by RTA confirms the officer asked for the pass multiple times. According to the police report, Ferrato was uncooperative when the officer asked for the pass and when he asked her to take a seat on a nearby bench. The report says that's when the officer forcibly detained Ferrato, putting her on the ground. After a struggle between the two continued for several minutes, additional units arrived and assisted taking Ferrato into custody.
Ferrato was charged with disorderly conduct. She filed a complaint after the incident and
has apologized for how Ferrato was treated that night and has released this statement:
"RTA's investigation and review of this incident is on-going. While there are some discrepancies as to what actually occurred, it is apparent that this matter could have been handled more appropriately. The Transit Police Officer was justified in asking the customer for proof of payment as part of his fare enforcement duties. However, our review of this incident shows that certain departmental policies and procedures were not followed. The officer involved is currently suspended pending further administrative action. RTA will continue its review of this matter and take required action. Our goal is to ensure that all of our customers are treated appropriately and respectfully."