A deputy from the Martin County Sheriff’s Office pulled over Sosa while driving. After checking his name in the computer system and finding an outstanding warrant for a David Sosa, Sosa explained that he had been mistakenly arrested four years earlier for the same warrant. He told the deputy about the differences between himself and the real Sosa who was wanted. The deputy arrested him anyway, and he spent three days in jail before the sheriff’s office acknowledged he was not the wanted Sosa and released him.
Sosa filed a lawsuit pursuant to 42 U.S.C. §1983 against the Martin County Sheriff’s Department alleging a violation of his Fourth and Fourteenth amendment rights by falsely arresting him and for detaining him longer than he should have been detained. He made a claim pursuant to Monell that the Sheriff failed to institute policies and train deputies to prevent these types of things from happening. The trial court dismissed the case for failure to state a claim.