FAYETTEVILLE, Arkansas – A Mexican woman mistakenly incarcerated for days without food or water will not be prosecuted on the charge that originally landed her in the system, a prosecutor said Tuesday.
Adriana Torres-Flores, 38, spent a March weekend in a holding cell in the Washington County Courthouse after a bailiff forgot to transfer her to the county jail. She was found when court resumed for the work week.
Deputy Prosecutor Mark Booher said a charge that she sold pirated CDs was dropped Monday. He said the prosecution was able to verify her alibi that she was watching a booth for someone else when police raided a flea market and seized the CDs and digital video discs.
Torres-Flores' attorney, Nathan Lewis, said Tuesday his client and her family were pleased with the prosecutor's decision.
"The family was of course thrilled about it," Lewis said. "She doesn't want to be in that courtroom again."
Cpl. Jarrod Hankins, a courthouse bailiff, locked Torres-Flores in the cinderblock cell but forgot to call other deputies to drive her to the county jail. Court was canceled the next day because of stormy weather and the courthouse was closed for the weekend. Torres-Flores had no food, water, or access to a bathroom during that time.
When court resumed March 10, Hankins discovered Torres-Flores in the cell. She was treated and released from a hospital. Hankins was suspended for 30 days without pay.