The Iowa Civil Liberties Union is suing the Des Moines Police Department on behalf of a woman who was allegedly forced to confess to a crime. I-C-L-U executive director Ben Stone says a Des Moines police officer threatened Maria Garces who was suspected in a check forgery case in August of 2000. Stone says the officer said he’d call Human Services to take away Garces’ children and the I-N-S to deport her husband if she didn’t confess to check fraud. Garces did confess and some of the officer’s threats were caught on a police audio-recording. After the recording was played in court, all charges against Garces were dropped. Stone says their suit seeks money and they want the court to order police to tape all interrogations in their entirety. Stone says police sometimes coerce confessions out of people and pick-and-choose what they want to record. He says full tape-recordings wouldn’t be expensive and they “would very much serve the interests of justice because it would preserve accurate information.”
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