2007_03_santiago.jpgWhat's worse than having the NYPD wrongfully arrest you? We think having your 3-year-old daughter taken into protective custody for three days because you were falsely arrested ranks pretty high. Margarita Santiago filed a notice of claim again the the city and city agencies, the step before a lawsuit, over an outrageous December 2006 incident.

Santiago, visiting NYC from Pennsylvania, was in a friend's car in East Harlem when the cops pulled them over on December 8. (It seems that the friend was driving while intoxicated.) When the police ran Santiago's Pennsylvania license, they arrested her, because they had "an outstanding bench warrant for an East Harlem resident named Margarita Santelises," according to the AP. So they arrested her - in front of 3-year-old daughter Mikhaila - and put Mikhailia into the Administration for Children's Services' care. And while Santiago was able to clear up the matter on December 9, she didn't her daughter back until December 12!

Santiago's lawyer Eric Rothstein told reporters, "She didn't know where her daughter was for three full days and part of two other days, and of course her daughter had no idea where Mommy was and wanted to know why Mommy had been arrested and when would she see Mommy again."

Santiago said Mikhaila panics if she see police cars, "She thinks that she's going to be taken away from me again. Rothstein said his client will sue if the city doesn't settle.