West Virginia Record

Wednesday, December 11, 2019

McDowell County Sheriff's Department accused of unlawful arrest

By Noddy A. Fernandez | May 2, 2018

General court 05

BLUEFIELD — A McDowell County man is suing a police officer and the county sheriff's department, alleging battery and violation of the plaintiff's civil rights.

James A. Johnson filed a complaint April 10 in U.S. District Court for the Southern District of West Virginia Bluefield Division against the McDowell County Sheriff Department and deputy sheriff Ron Blevins, alleging violation of Fourth Amendment to the U.S. Constitution and the West Virginia Constitution.

According to the complaint, on April 8, 2016, Johnson was illegally tased multiple times by Blevins, rendering him unable to stand or walk. Johnson says Blevins was under the scope of his employment with the McDowell County Sheriff Department when he to continued to tase and fire the weapon into the plaintiff's back. 

Johnson says his injuries required him to be transported by emergency personnel to the hospital for treatment. The plaintiff alleges the defendants disregarded the rights of an individual by using excessive and wrongful force during the course of arrest.

Johnson seeks trial by jury, all damages and whatever equitable relief the court deems appropriate. He is represented by attorney Travis A. Griffith of Griffith Law Center PLLC in Charleston.

U.S. District Court for the Southern District of West Virginia Bluefield Division case number 1:17-cv-04404

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U.S. District Court for the Southern District of West Virginia Bluefield DivisionGriffith Law Center