Video: The arrest that led to Longboat Officer Jessica Anderson’s termination
This is the actual video of Longboat Key Police Officer Jessica Anderson who was terminated for an unlawful arrest she made on June 14, 2009, on Longboat Key.
A man was asked to move a car parked in the Gulf of Mexico Drive right-of-way, and according to the police report, several people at the residence had been notified in the past that the car was illegally parked in the right-of-way. It was determined by internal investigation that Anderson violated the subject’s rights by conducting an unjustified arrest that she performed on the subject who failed to produce identification. Anderson is appealing her termination, claiming that other officers in the department violated regulations and were not terminated.
Another officer, Patricia Beardsley, was also fired after she set off a firestorm for the Longboat Key Police Department last year. Beardsley was fired for brandishing a firearm on a mother and children. The Beardsley incident occurred while a mother was picking up her children from Southside Elementary School, and she pulled into Beardsley’s driveway to turn around. That’s when Officer Beardsley came out of her home allegedly pointing a gun at arm level toward the car. According to the mother, the children were screaming so loudly she could not hear what Beardsley was saying as she approached the car. Beardsley maintains that she was carrying a cell phone, not a handgun. However, several other witnesses who called 911 also saw the handgun.
The town has since hired two new officers to replace Anderson and Beardsley, but police coverage remains at historic lows.