Tallahassee police officer accused of planting evidence during DUI arrest, full bodycam released

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A routine traffic stop turned into a legal battle for a Tallahassee man after bodycam video showed a police officer poured a bottle of liquor and appeared to plant it inside the man’s car during a DUI arrest.
On May 5, 2023, Tallahassee Police officer Kiersten Oliver pulled over 56-year-old Calvin Riley for driving with a suspended license. The 26-year-old officer detained Riley and called for backup.

While the other officer walked over to Riley to question him, bodycam footage captured Oliver handling a bottle of cognac before allegedly pouring the small bottle into Riley’s car during the search and insinuating that Riley had opened it inside the vehicle.

Despite claims of smelling alcohol, no immediate evidence of impairment was found. The officers discussion, caught on bodycam, indicated a strategy to arrest Riley for DUI, even though they did not have concrete evidence. Oliver, needing to move Riley from her police car to the other officer’s vehicle, called in a senior officer, Sergeant Brian Smith, for more backup.

The two lower-ranking officers later turned off their body cameras once Smith realized they were still recording. Before they stopped recording, officer Oliver suggested parking Riley’s car in a nearby church so he wouldn’t have to pay any fees for getting his car back. Riley said between posting his $750 bond, legal fees, and missed work at the barbershop, he missed several car payments before deciding to forfeit his car.

Riley has since filed suit and his legal representation are focusing on the lack of a policy that prohibits the impounding of liquids as evidence, a justification officer Oliver cited for her actions.

The Tallahassee Police Department issued a statement reading in part quote we have thoroughly reviewed the incident and did not find any evidence of misconduct.

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