The Newton County Sheriff is suing the county and several commissioners for alleged defamation, violation of several Texas penal codes, and violating four of his constitutional guaranteed rights.
Edward L. Shannon filed suit against Newton County, Texas; Truman Dougharty; Courtney Tracy Ponthier; Leanord E. Powell; Prentiss L. Hopson; William Fuller; Thomas T. Gill; Cynthia Hall; Sherry Larae Moore; Joe Haralson; and the Texas Department of Public Safety in the U.S. District Court of the Eastern District of Texas, Beaumont Division on Sep. 16.
The suit avers that Shannon was accused of terroristic threats against the commissioners court as well as criminal mischief in violation of Texas law in April 2014. The petition provides that he was indicted on those charges, arrested and tried for a crime he did not commit, and unlawfully removed from office in violation of his Fourth, Fifth, Eighth, and 14th Amendment rights. A jury found Shannon not guilty of the charges on March 11 and Shannon returned to his office the next day.
The petitioner seeks to recover damages for permanent injury, including great emotional distress, physical pain, mental anguish, fear, humiliation, embarrassment, degradation, injury to his reputation, suffering and economic damages (including loss of income). He also seeks punishment for those aforementioned commissioners as well as an injunction requiring stricter training within the Texas Department of Public Safety.
Shannon is being represented by Melissa Moore of Moore & Associates in Houston.
U.S. District Court of the Eastern District of Texas, Beaumont Division case number 1:15-cv-00354-MAC