Bronx Woman Sues City After Getting Arrested for Calling 311

Photo: Wu Kaixiang/Xinhua Press/Corbis

Arles Cepeda, a 67-year-old resident of the Castle Hill Houses in the Bronx, made 44 311 calls (as well as two 911 calls) over a 15-month period, after the NYCHA property’s management company didn’t respond to her complaints about alleged drug-dealing. She was arrested for the excessive calling and now, the New York Daily News reports, she’s suing the city, saying that it violated her civil and First Amendment rights. “I was handcuffed behind my back,” she told the paper, adding that she was embarrassed in front of her neighbors. Though the case was dropped and never assigned a docket number, Cepeda says she was threatened with commitment to a psychiatric hospital — and she hasn’t called 311 since.

Woman Sues City After Arrests for Calling 311