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Woman Claims Police Mistook Epileptic Seizure For Resisting Arrest

Andrea Nicole Hansen is crowdsourcing funds to help her fight charges against purported police misconduct after she allegedly suffered a fit.

by VICE News
Nov 19 2014, 5:37pm

Photo via Flickr

A Californian woman is raising funds online to pay for a criminal defense attorney lawyer to fight public intoxication, resisting arrest and battery on a police officer misdemeanor charges she claims were in fact a result of involuntary epileptic seizures, the San Luis Opisbo TribunereportedTuesday.

Andrea Nicole Hansen, 32, of Pismo Beach says police used excessive force when arresting her on October 11. She reportedly called 911 after having several seizures as a result of her juvenile myoclonic epilepsy — the most common form of epilepsy that emerges during childhood.

Hansen, who goes by Andrea Starr online, began a GoFundMe page to raise $5,000 to fight her charges. At the time of writing she has raised $2,996. Her posting includes a number of images of bruises and minor cuts allegedly suffered during her arrest.

Hansen claims that she has cell phone footage to support her case, the Tribune reported. Police have denied her account and say they have body camera footage to support their narrative. The woman also said she was denied access to medication while in police custody, prompting further seizures.

"They are uneducated in epilepsy or are in a state of denial, because they are still claiming, my limbs kicking, thrashing, vulgar behavior was voluntary and no seizure activity was noticed," Hansen wrote on her fundraising page about the police's alleged behavior on the night of her arrest.

She admits that she had "a few drinks" on the night of her arrest.

Pismo Beach police commander Mark Miller said that a department review of the body camera footage had cleared both officers involved of any wrongdoing.

"I can tell you that there's no truth to any of it," Miller told the Tribune.

Hansen is due in San Luis Obispo Superior Court Thursday for a pre-trial hearing.

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