Andalusia woman claims officer assaulted, unlawfully arrested her in lawsuit

ANDALUSIA, Ala (WDHN) — A woman is suing an Andalusia Police Officer after claiming he violated her civil rights during an unlawful arrest earlier this year.

The lawsuit was filed on behalf of Twyla Stallworth and her son, Jermari Marshall.

The lawsuit alleges that on February 23, 2024, Andalusia Police Officer John Barton assaulted 18-year-old Marshall before entering Stallworth’s home, where he attacked and arrested her because she refused to give Barton her ID.

She was charged with obstruction, resisting arrest, and eluding.

According to the complaint, Stallworth’s arrest was racially motivated and went against her constitutional and federal rights as a citizen of the United States.

“Defendant Barton unlawfully arrested Ms. Stallworth due to his lack of skills or carelessness,” the lawsuit reads. “Defendant Barton assaulted Jermari due to his lack of skills or carelessness.”

Stallworth says after her arrest, she was taken to the Covington County Jail, put in an inmate uniform that was too small, and placed in a cold cell for over 15 hours before she posted a $3,035 bond.

On March 8, Stallworth received word her charges were being dropped and got an apology from Early Johnson, the mayor of Andalusia.

“On behalf of the City of Andalusia and the Andalusia Police Department, I would like to apologize to Twyla Stallworth for her arrest in February,” Mayor Johnson said in the apology. “The arresting officer has a clean record with our department, but he made a mistake in the case on February 23. He has been disciplined.”

The lawsuit did not go into detail about Officer Barton’s punishment.

As a result of the “unlawful arrest,” Stallworth says she and her son suffered psychological and physical damages such as anxiety, depression, PTSD, and more.

Stallworth is asking for an unspecified amount of compensatory damages.

For the latest news, weather, sports, and streaming video, head to WDHN -