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IN THE UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT

FOR THE EASTERN DISTRICT OF TENNESSEE


GREENEVILLE DIVISION

BRADLEY CRAIG, GARY CRAIG, and JERRY CRAIG, }


}
Plaintiffs, }
}
v. } CASE NO.:
}
SULLIVAN COUNTY, TENNESSEE ex rel. } JURY TRIAL DEMANDED
SULLIVAN COUNTY SHERIFF’S DEPARTMENT, }
CITY OF BRISTOL, TENNESSEE ex rel. }
BRISTOL TENNESSEE POLICE DEPARTMENT, }
WASHINGTON COUNTY, VIRGINIA ex rel. }
WAHINGTON COUNTY SHERIFF’S DEPARTMENT, }
T.M. WIDENER, in his official capacity, }
J.S. BLEVINS, in his official capacity, }
WILLIAM FORD, in his official capacity, }
JONATHAN LEICHLITER, in his official capacity, }
ERIC SARGENT, in his official capacity, }
RAY HAYES, in his official capacity, }
BURK MURRAY, in his official capacity, }
MATTHEW PRICE, in his official capacity, and }
JOHN AND JANE DOES 1 THROUGH 50, }
in their official capacities, all whose true names }
are unknown, }
}
Defendants. }

COMPLAINT

COME NOW, the Plaintiffs, Bradley Craig (“B. Craig”), Gary Craig (“G. Craig”), and Jerry Craig (“J.

Craig”) (collectively, “Plaintiffs” or “Craigs”), by and through undersigned counsel, Law Office of James W.

Friauf, PLLC, and for their Complaint against Sullivan County, Tennessee ex rel. Sullivan County Sheriff’s

Department (“SCSD”), City of Bristol, Tennessee ex rel. Bristol Tennessee Police Department (“BPD”),

Washington County, Virginia ex rel. Washington County Sheriff’s Department (“WCSD”), William Ford

(“Ford”), Jonathan Leichliter (“Leichliter”), Eric Sargent (“Sargent”), T.M. Widener (“Widener”), J.S. Blevins

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(“Blevins”), Ray Hayes (“Hayes”), Burk Murray (“Murray”), Matthew Price (“Price”), and John and Jane Does

1 through 50 (“Doe(s)”) (collectively, “Defendants”) aver as follows:

I. PARTIES

1. Plaintiff Bradley Craig is a resident citizen of the State of Tennessee, County of Sullivan. At

all times material hereto, B. Craig resided at 218 and 255 Morrell Creek Road, Bluff City, Tennessee 37618.

2. Plaintiff Jerry Craig is a resident citizen of the State of Tennessee, County of Sullivan. At all

times material hereto, J. Craig resided at 265 Morrell Creek Road, Bluff City, Tennessee 37618.

3. Plaintiff Gary Craig is a resident citizen of the State of Tennessee, County of Sullivan. At all

times material hereto, G. Craig resided at 249 Morrell Creek Road, Bluff City, Tennessee 37618.

4. Defendant SCSD is a governmental entity that, by and through its Sheriff’s Department, is

responsible for the hiring, training, supervision, and discipline of Sullivan County Sheriff’s Deputies. This

defendant may be served with process via Mayor Richard S. Venable, 3411 Highway 126, Suite 206,

Blountville, Tennessee 37617.

5. Defendant BPD is a governmental entity that, by and through its Police Department, is

responsible for the hiring, training, supervision, and discipline of City of Bristol, Tennessee police officers.

This defendant may be served with process via Mayor Jack Young, 801 Anderson Street, Bristol, Tennessee

37620.

6. Defendant WCSD is a governmental entity that, by and through its Sheriff’s Department, is

responsible for the hiring, training, supervision, and discipline of Washington County, Virginia Sheriff’s

Deputies. This defendant may be served with process via county attorney Lucy E. Phillips, Government

Center Building, 1 Government Center Place, Suite A, Abingdon, Virginia 24210.

7. Upon information and belief, Defendant T.M. Widener is a resident citizen of the

Commonwealth of Virginia, County of Washington. At all times material hereto, Defendant WCSD employed

Widener as a detective for the Washington County Sheriff’s Department, and Widener acted under the color

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of state law. Plaintiffs are suing Widener in his official capacity. This defendant may be served with process:

(i) at the Washington County Office of Sheriff, 20281 Rustic Lane, Abingdon, Virginia, 24210; and (ii) via

county attorney Lucy E. Phillips, Government Center Building, 1 Government Center Place, Suite A,

Abingdon, Virginia 24210

8. Upon information and belief, Defendant J.S. Blevins is a resident citizen of the

Commonwealth of Virginia, County of Washington. At all times material hereto, Defendant WCSD employed

Blevins as a lieutenant for the Washington County Sherriff’s Department, and Blevins acted under the color

of state law. Plaintiffs are suing Blevins in his official capacity. This defendant may be served with process:

(i) at the Washington County Office of Sheriff, 20281 Rustic Lane, Abingdon, Virginia, 24210; and (ii) via

county attorney Lucy E. Phillips, Government Center Building, 1 Government Center Place, Suite A,

Abingdon, Virginia 24210

9. Upon information and belief, Defendant William Ford is a resident citizen of the State of

Tennessee, County of Sullivan. At all times material hereto, Defendant SCSD employed Ford as a detective

for the Sullivan County Sheriff’s Department, and Ford acted under the color of state law. Plaintiffs are suing

Ford in his official capacity. This defendant may be served with process via Mayor Richard S. Venable, 3411

Highway 126, Suite 206, Blountville, Tennessee 37617.

10. Upon information and belief, Defendant Jonathan Leichliter is a resident citizen of the State

of Tennessee, County of Sullivan. At all times material hereto, Defendant SCSD employed Leichliter as a

detective for the Sullivan County Sheriff’s Department, and Leichliter acted under the color of state law.

Plaintiffs are suing Ford in his official capacity. This defendant may be served with process via Mayor Richard

S. Venable, 3411 Highway 126, Suite 206, Blountville, Tennessee 37617.

11. Upon information and belief, Defendant Ray Hayes is a resident citizen of the State of

Tennessee, County of Sullivan. At all times material hereto, Defendant SCSD employed Hayes as a detective

for the Sullivan County Sheriff’s Department, and Hayes acted under the color of state law. Plaintiffs are

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suing Hayes in his official capacity. This defendant may be served with process via Mayor Richard S.

Venable, 3411 Highway 126, Suite 206, Blountville, Tennessee 37617.

12. Upon information and belief, Defendant Burk Murray is a resident citizen of the State of

Tennessee, County of Sullivan. At all times material hereto, Defendant SCSD employed Murray as a

detective for the Sullivan County Sheriff’s Department, and Murray acted under the color of state law.

Plaintiffs are suing Murray in his official capacity. This defendant may be served with process via Mayor

Richard S. Venable, 3411 Highway 126, Suite 206, Blountville, Tennessee 37617.

13. Upon information and belief, Defendant Matthew Price is a resident citizen of the State of

Tennessee, County of Sullivan. At all times material hereto, Defendant SCSD employed Price as a detective

for the Sullivan County Sheriff’s Department, and Price acted under the color of state law. Plaintiffs are suing

Price in his official capacity. This defendant may be served with process via Mayor Richard S. Venable, 3411

Highway 126, Suite 206, Blountville, Tennessee 37617.

14. Upon information and belief, Defendant Eric Sargent is a resident citizen of the State of

Tennessee, County of Sullivan. At all times material hereto, Defendant BPD employed Sargent as an

investigator for the City of Bristol, Tennessee Police Department, and Sargent acted under the color of state

law. Plaintiffs are suing Sargent in his official capacity. This defendant may be served with process via Mayor

Jack Young, 801 Anderson Street, Bristol, Tennessee 37620.

15. Upon information and belief, Defendants John and Jane Does 1 through 50 are resident

citizens of the : (i) State of Tennessee, County of Sullivan; or (ii) Commonwealth of Virginia, County of

Washington. At all times material hereto, Defendants WCSD, BPD, and SCSD, respectively, employed Does

as a police officers, sheriff’s deputies, investigators, or detectives during the three (3) searches of Plaintiffs’

property. At all times material hereto, Does acted under the color of each of their respective state laws.

Plaintiffs are suing Does in their official capacities. Each Doe may be served through its employer, i.e., Mayor

Richard S. Venable (SCSD), Mayor Jack Young (BPD), and county attorney Lucy E. Phillips (WCSD).

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II. JURISDICTION AND VENUE

16. Plaintiffs re-allege and incorporate by reference each and every averment set forth in

paragraphs 1-15 herein, inclusive.

17. This action arises from Defendants’ violation(s) of 42 U.S.C. § 1983 and the United States

Constitution. The Court has jurisdiction over this matter. 28 U.S.C. § 1331.

18. The remaining causes of action are so related to the claims within the original jurisdiction of

this Court so as to form part of the same case or controversy. Accordingly, the Court has supplemental

jurisdiction over Plaintiffs’ claims against Defendants for their violation(s) of the Tennessee Constitution and

Tennessee common law. 28 U.S.C. § 1367.

19. A substantial part of the events or omissions giving rise to this matter occurred in Sullivan

County, Tennessee. Venue is proper. 28 U.S.C. § 1391(b)(2).

III. GENERAL ALLEGATIONS

20. Plaintiffs re-allege and incorporate by reference each and every averment set forth in

paragraphs 1-19 herein, inclusive.

21. At all times material hereto, Plaintiff B. Craig owned and operated a legitimate family

business specializing in automobile “bodywork” and repair.

22. At all times material hereto, Defendants were aware of Plaintiffs’ legitimate, family business.

In fact, Plaintiffs have previously performed “bodywork” and repair for sheriff’s deputies and police officers

employed by Defendants WCSD, SCSD, and BPD.

A. April 22, 2017: Unidentified assailant(s) steal six (6) John Deere lawnmowers from
Meade Tractor.

23. Meade Tractor is a John Deere equipment dealership located at 19226 Lee Highway,

Abingdon, Virginia 24210 (Washington County).

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24. On April 22, 2017, at approximately 6:20 PM, unidentified assailant(s) broke into Meade

Tractor and stole six (6) John Deere lawnmowers by placing them into a large, white box trailer. [See Exhibit

“1,” attached hereto and incorporated herein by reference].

25. The unidentified assailant(s) broke into Meade Tractor by cutting the fence surrounding

Meade Tractor in two (2) places. [See id.].

26. Pursuant to Meade Tractor surveillance footage, the unidentified assailant(s) drove a black

Chevrolet Tahoe and a “truck” towing the box trailer. [See id.].

27. The box trailer: (i) was completely rectangular; and (ii) did not contain a side door. [See id.].

28. According to the language of Ford, “[t]he trailer would have been of sufficient size to transport

the six (6) stolen mowers from the business.” [See id.].

29. Specifically, based on the dimensions of the stolen lawnmowers, the trailer had to have been

at least forty-two (42) feet in length in order to have transported all six (6) lawnmowers simultaneously. [See

id.].

30. On April 24, 2017, Meade Tractor Vice President Chad Beasley (“Mr. Beasley”) reported the

lawnmowers stolen.1

B. April 23, 2017: J. Craig purchases six (6) John Deere lawnmowers from Daniel Helton.

31. In or around early April 2017, J. Craig traveled to Abingdon, Virginia, to visit a flea market.

32. While at the flea market, J. Craig met (and purchased goods from) a vendor named Daniel

Helton (“Mr. Helton”).

33. Upon information and belief, Mr. Helton was a resident citizen of the Commonwealth of

Virginia, County of Washington.

1
The April 28, 2017, Affidavit of Complaint indicates Mr. Beasley reported the lawnmowers stolen on April
23, 2017. This is incorrect. According to a dispatch recording, Mr. Beasley made the report on April 24, 2017.

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34. J. Craig and Mr. Helton discussed the possibility of future sales.

35. Approximately two weeks later, on or about April 23, 2017, Mr. Helton showed up at J.

Craig’s doorstep with six (6) John Deere lawnmowers for sale.

36. J. Craig purchased all six (6) lawnmowers for Six Thousand Dollars and 00/100 ($6,000.00).

37. Mr. Helton passed away shortly thereafter.

C. Defendant WCSD contacts Defendant BPD to assist with the investigation.

38. After reviewing the surveillance footage(s) from Meade Tractor and Roadrunner Market

(“Roadrunner”), 18224 Lee Highway, Abingdon, Virginia 24210, Widener contacted BPD “to ask for

assistance in identifying” the black Chevrolet Tahoe, “truck,” and large, white box trailer. [See id.].

39. Sargent responded to Widener and “indicated that he as [sic] familiar with one of those

vehicles, and the persons known to him to be the owners,” i.e., the Craigs. [See id.].

40. Sargent advised Widener that the Craigs owned a vehicle “matching the black Chevrolet

Tahoe.” [See id.].

41. This is a lie. Neither J. Craig nor B. Craig have ever owned a black Chevrolet Tahoe or any

vehicle similar thereto.

42. Sargent also advised Widener that he (personally) had “worked numerous thefts and

burglaries that Jerry and Bradley Craig were the prime suspects [sic].” [See id.].

43. This is also a lie. Prior to the instant matter, neither BPD nor Sargent had ever investigated

J. Craig or B. Craig as the “prime suspects” of any “thefts and burglaries,” much less “numerous” ones.

44. Unfortunately, this is not the first time Sargent has lied about the Craigs.

45. In 2015, unidentified assailant(s) stole five (5) vehicles from Proffitt Tri-City Auto Parts, 116

Old Thomas Bridge Road, Bluff City, Tennessee 37618.

46. In response, owner Darrell Proffitt (“Mr. Proffitt”) contacted BPD.

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47. Almost immediately after arriving at Proffitt Tri-City Auto Parts, Sargent began insinuating

that the Craigs were guilty of stealing the five (5) vehicles.

48. At the time, Sargent had absolutely no proof of the Craigs’ involvement.

49. In fact, SCSD ultimately recovered all five (5) vehicles. Unsurprisingly, the Craigs were not

involved.

50. Upon information and belief, by presenting Mr. Proffitt with this unsolicited (and inaccurate)

information, Sargent was attempting to gather information he could utilize to persecute the Craigs for crimes

they did not commit.

51. Sargent did not stop there. After Mr. Proffitt repeatedly reassured Sargent that the Craigs

were not involved with the car theft(s), Sargent (inaccurately) informed Mr. Proffitt that the Craigs had

previously stolen a Chevrolet truck from Bristol Motor Speedway in 2008.

52. This is yet another lie. Notwithstanding the fact that no law enforcement agency has ever

investigated the Craigs for stealing any type of automobile (prior to the instant matter), no individual has ever

even contacted the Craigs regarding a Chevrolet truck stolen from Bristol Motor Speedway in 2008.

53. As evidenced above, Sargent has personally led a witch hunt against the Craigs since 2015.

D. April 27, 2017: Defendants perform a warrantless, aerial surveillance of the Craigs’
properties.

54. On April 27, 2017, Widener and Blevins performed an aerial surveillance of the Craigs’

properties with the assistance of the Virginia State Police Aviation Unit. [See id.].

55. Upon information and belief, WCSD did not obtain a warrant for this aerial surveillance.

56. According to the April 28, 2017, Affidavit of Complaint, “[t]he flight pattern used by the

helicopter was in the normal flight zone.” [See id.].

57. However, contrary to the information contained in the Affidavit of Complaint, at times, the

pilot was eye-level with the tree line.

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58. The Craigs’ tree line is approximately fifty-eight (58) feet above ground.

59. During this aerial surveillance, Widener and Blevins claimed to have identified: (i) a “red or

maroon colored [sic] truck consistent in appearance with the one seen pulling the white box trailer”; (ii) a

“black colored [sic] SUV consistent with the black Chevrolet Tahoe”; and (iii) “a white colored [sic] box trailer

matching the description of the one seen in the surveillance videos.” [See id.].

60. The “red or maroon colored [sic] truck” is a 2002 Chevrolet Trailblazer. This Trailblazer does

not have the towing capabilities necessary to haul a 42’ x 36’ trailer.

61. The “black colored [sic] SUV consistent with the black Chevrolet Tahoe” is a 2002 Toyota

Sequoia. This Sequoia is inoperable and missing its front end. Plaintiffs removed the front end approximately

one (1) year prior to April 27, 2017.

62. Moreover, the 2002 Toyota Sequoia was sitting in plain view, unobscured, in the middle of

B. Craig’s property. All persons involved in the warrantless aerial surveillance would have immediately

identified the Toyota Sequoia as missing its front end.

63. However, Widener and Blevins conveniently captured no photos evidencing this pertinent,

mitigating factor.

64. As indicated by Blevins’s and Widener’s own surveillance photos, unlike the large box trailer

depicted in the Meade Tractor and Roadrunner video surveillance footage(s), the Craigs’ box trailer: (i) is not

completely rectangular; and (ii) contains a side door.

65. Most importantly, the Craigs’ box trailer is twenty-four (24) feet in length.

66. As indicated in Paragraph 29, the trailer used to steal the lawnmowers had to be at least

forty-two (42) feet in length.

67. Accordingly, the Craigs’ trailer is approximately one-half the size of the trailer contained in

the surveillance footage(s).

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68. Contrary to Blevins’s and Widener’s assertions, neither the inoperable 2002 Chevrolet

Sequoia, 2002 Chevrolet Trailblazer, nor the twenty-four (24) foot box trailer matches the description(s) of

those vehicles used during the April 22, 2017, lawnmower heist.

E. April 28, 2017: Defendants search the Craigs’ properties.

69. Upon information and belief, Does employed by BPD and SCSD entered (and inspected)

Plaintiffs’ property prior to April 28, 2017. Such Does did so absent either Plaintiffs’ consent or a valid search

warrant.

70. On April 28, 2017, Ford applied for (and obtained) a warrant to search Plaintiffs’ property.

71. The Affidavit of Complaint contains numerous inaccuracies and blatant misrepresentations:

a. “On April 23, 2017….Beasley reported a theft of six (6) John Deere lawn mowers [sic]
from the night before.” [Id.].

i. No one from Meade Tractor reported a theft on April 23, 2017. On April 24,
2017, Mr. Beasley reported vandalism, not theft.

b. “Detective Eric Sargent…provided that…[Plaintiffs] had a vehicle matching the black


Chevrolet Tahoe.” [Id.].

i. Plaintiffs have never owned a black Chevrolet Tahoe or any type of vehicle
similar thereto. Moreover, Blevins and Widener would have noticed the fact that
Plaintiffs’ black Toyota Sequoia is missing its front end.

c. “Detective Eric Sargent…told…[Detective William Ford] and the Washington County


detectives that he and his department have worked numerous thefts and burglaries that
Jerry and Bradley Craig were prime suspects [sic].” [Id.].

i. Neither Sargent nor BPD have ever questioned or investigated Plaintiffs with
respect to any theft or burglary.

d. “Your Affiant [Detective William Ford] also knows…that these individuals are suspected
of committing similar offenses in Sullivan County, TN.” [Id.].

i. SCSD has never questioned or investigated Plaintiffs with respect to any theft
or burglary.

e. During the aerial surveillance, “Lieutenant Blevins and Detective Widener…observed


part of a white colored [sic] box trailer…that matched that seen on the surveillance
videos.” [Id.].

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i. Plaintiffs’ box trailer is approximately one-half the size of the trailer used by the
unidentified assailants. In further dissimilarity, Plaintiffs’ box trailer: (i) is not
completely square; and (ii) contains a side-door. The color white is the only
similarity.

f. During the aerial surveillance, “[a] red or maroon colored [sic] truck consistent in
appearance with the one seen pulling the white box trailer was located.” [Id.].

i. Defendants identified a 2002 Chevrolet Trailblazer dissimilar in appearance to


the truck contained in the surveillance videos. The color red is the only similarity.

g. During the aerial surveillance, “[a] black colored [sic] SUV consistent with the black
Chevrolet Tahoe seen in the surveillance video was located.” [Id.].

i. Defendants identified a 2002 Toyota Sequoia. The Toyota Sequoia is


inoperable and missing its front end.

h. “Your Affiant [Detective William Ford] has learned...[Plaintiffs] have criminal histories
that include convictions for burglary and theft.” [Id.].

i. This is a blatant lie. Neither B. Craig nor J. Craig have convictions for burglary.

ii. In 2008, B. Craig and J. Craig pled guilty to Theft under One Thousand Dollars
($1,000.00) in United States District Court for the Eastern District of Tennessee.
Plaintiffs appealed this conviction and are currently awaiting a ruling by the Sixth
Circuit Court of Appeals.

72. The explicit language of the search warrant limited Defendants’ search to: (i) the six (6)

missing John Deere lawnmowers; (ii) keys to the lawnmowers; (iii) “universal keys used in the thefts”; and

(iv) “[b]urglary tools including bolt cutters and grinders to cut the locks and fencing.” [See id.].

73. However, contrary to the explicit language of the April 28, 2017, search warrant, Defendants

did not limit their search whatsoever.

74. In addition to those items contained in the search warrant, Defendants also seized the

following property:

a. 2012 Ranger z520 (Boat);

b. A boat trailer;

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c. All of Plaintiffs’ fishing gear, including rods, reels, lures, tackle, etc.2;

d. A nearly new Wildwood Camper (and its Bill of Sale);

e. Four (4) box trailers stocked with various mechanic’s tools;

f. Three (3) portable Honda generators;

g. Table saw;

h. Various hand tools;

i. Multiple motorcycles;

j. Five (5) golf carts (and their Bill(s) of Sale);

k. Four (4) brand new wheels (with tires) for a Toyota Tundra (still containing stickers);

l. Four (4) brand new trailer wheels (with tires) (still containing stickers);

m. Four (4) brand new, 10-ply tires (still containing stickers);

n. An automobile toolbox;

o. A Toyota 4Runner;

p. Multiple box trailers, including Plaintiffs’ twenty-four (24) foot box trailer identified during
the aerial surveillance;

q. 2016 Polaris XP1000 Highlifter;

r. 2015 Polaris RZR 5900;

s. 2015 Polaris RZR 570 (belonging to B. Craig’s grandson);

t. 2015 Polaris Sportsman 90 (belonging to B. Craig’s grandson);

u. Wild Game Innovations Trail Camera (ripped from a tree at the end of J. Craig’s driveway

by Ford);

v. Multiple other trail cameras and other electronics;

2
Upon information and belief, Defendants’ deputies and police officers are avid fisherman and confiscated
Plaintiffs’ fishing supplies (and boat) for personal use.

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w. Various jet skis;

x. Multiple vehicles registered in family members’ names (including the title(s) and/or Bill(s)
of Sale);

y. Multiple vehicles registered in Plaintiffs’ names (including the title(s) and/or Bill(s) of
Sale); and

z. Multiple vehicles registered in Plaintiffs’ friends’ names (including the title(s) and/or
Bill(s) of Sale).

75. Defendants SCSD and Doe(s) prepared an Inventory List containing some of the items

confiscated from Plaintiffs’ property. [See Exhibit “2,” attached hereto and incorporated herein by

reference].

76. However, unfortunately, this Inventory List is grossly inaccurate and does not begin to

itemize the extent of personal property unlawfully confiscated from Plaintiffs’ residences.

77. Due to the sheer volume of personal property unlawfully removed from Plaintiffs’ residences,

Plaintiffs are unable to prepare an accurate itemization of missing goods.

78. Defendants did not intend to abide by the unambiguous parameters of the search warrant.

79. For example, Plaintiffs (and their respective family members) personally witnessed

Defendants: (i) use their radios to run automobile VIN numbers through some type of database; (ii) receive

indication that the VIN numbers were “clear” – or words to that effect; and (iii) confiscate the “clear” vehicles

anyways.

80. In further example of this reckless disregard for the parameters of the search warrant,

Plaintiffs witnessed Hayes and Leichliter: (i) pick-up bolt cutters; (ii) use the bolt cutters to cut a lock on one

of Plaintiffs’ trailers; (iii) throw the bolt cutters onto the ground; and (iv) leave them there.

81. The search warrant specifically itemizes “bolt cutters.” Clearly, Defendants were not

interested in adhering to the strict parameters of the search warrant.

82. At one point, Ford advised G. Craig, “we’re going to take all this stuff and sort it out later.”

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83. Defendants have failed to “sort it out later.” They are currently in unlawful possession of

Plaintiffs’ personal property and refuse to return it in accordance with the U.S. Constitution and Tennessee

administrative law.

F. April 28, 2017: Defendants unlawfully search G. Craig’s garage.

84. As evidenced by Exhibit 1, the search warrant does contain G. Craig’s name.

85. As further evidenced by Exhibit 1, the Affidavit of Complaint does not contain G. Craig’s

name.

86. Clearly, the search warrant did not contemplate a search of G. Craig’s property.

87. Notwithstanding the foregoing, Defendants unlawfully searched a garage located on G.

Craig’s property.

88. During the search of the garage, G. Craig’s wife and children arrived at their residence.

89. Does employed by Defendants met G. Craig’s wife and children by brandishing their firearms

and aggressively demanding G. Craig’s wife and children leave their residence.

90. G. Craig’s wife and children advised the Does that they resided at the location being

searched.

91. Despite that information, the Does continued brandishing their firearms, yelling at the family,

and aggressively demanding they leave their residence.

92. Fearing for their safety, G. Craig’s wife and children left their residence and notified G. Craig

of the ongoing search.

93. G. Craig left work immediately. When G. Craig arrived at his residence and informed Ford

that he was the lawful owner of the garage (and property) Defendants were searching, Ford hung his head.

94. Despite Ford’s knowledge of the illegality of the search, Defendants continued their

rampage, unabated.

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95. Despite Ford’s knowledge of the illegality of the search, Defendants recklessly disregarded

G. Craig’s constitutional rights and seized his property without due process of law.

96. Later that evening, (presumptively, after realizing his error), Ford advised G. Craig that

SCSD would compensate G. Craig for the damage to his garage and the locks cut by Does employed by

SCSD.

97. However, to date, SCSD: (i) has not returned the property unlawfully seized from G. Craig’s

garage; and (ii) has not compensated G. Craig for the damage to his garage or the locks cut by Does

employed by SCSD.

G. May 3, 2017: Defendants search B. Craig’s business.

98. On April 28, 2017, Price and other Does employed by all Defendants demanded B. Craig:

(i) meet Price and such Does at his body shop; and (ii) provide consent to search the body shop.

99. B. Craig attempted to invoke his Fourth Amendment rights and express his disinclination to

provide such consent,

100. In response, Price threatened, “you can do this the easy way or the hard way. Given the

circumstances, we can do whatever we want” – or words to that effect.

101. Feeling he had no choice, B. Craig provided his consent to search the body shop.

102. Based partly on the information obtained during the April 28, 2017, search, Leichliter applied

for (and obtained) a warrant to search Plaintiff B. Craig’s business on May 3, 2017. [See Exhibit “3,”

attached hereto and incorporated herein by reference].

103. In his application for the search warrant, Leichliter relies heavily on: (i) items confiscated

during the April 28, 2017, search; and (ii) personal observations arising from the April 28, 2017, search(es).

104. The Affidavit of Complaint contains numerous inaccuracies and blatant misrepresentations:

a. “Your Affiant, Jonathan Leichliter…have [sic] been involved in investigations in


which…[Plaintiffs] were the suspects in theft related [sic] cases.” [Id.].

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i. Neither SCSD nor Leichliter have ever questioned or investigated Plaintiffs with
respect to any theft.

b. “Your Affiant, Jonathan Leichliter…has firsthand knowledge of the location of…evidence


establishing that…[Plaintiffs] were operating a chop shop.” [Id.].

i. Neither SCSD nor Leichliter have any “firsthand knowledge” of evidence


establishing Plaintiffs “were operating a chop shop.”

c. During the April 28, 2017, search “your Affiant and other officers immediately
noticed...tools capable of being used to remove vehicle identification numbers.” [Id.].

i. Plaintiffs were not (and never have been) in possession of “tools capable of
being used to remove vehicle identification numbers.” Therefore, Leichliter
could not have “noticed” such tools.

d. During the April 28, 2017, search “[y]our Affiant also observed...slim jims which are
flexible pieces of metal.” [Id.].

i. Plaintiffs are not (and never have been) in possession of “slim jims.” Therefore,
Leichliter could not have “observed” such tools.

e. “Also observed by detectives...were pieces of metal and number punches that can be
used to produce counterfeit VIN plates.” [Id.].

i. Plaintiffs were not (and never have been) in possession of “number punches
that can be used to produce counterfeit VIN plates.” Leichliter observed
extremely thin, flimsy number punches intended for leather customization.
These “number punches” cannot be used on metal.

f. “…stolen golf carts found on…[Plaintiffs’] property on April 28-29, 2017.” [Id.].

i. To begin with, Defendants were not on Plaintiffs’ property on April 29, 2017.

ii. Furthermore, Defendants confiscated Plaintiffs’ golf carts with their respective
Bill(s) of Sale. Accordingly, at the time Leichliter authored this Affidavit of
Complaint, he was aware the golf carts were not “stolen.”

g. “Your Affiant also saw…tools that were capable of being used to punch the legitimate
VIN numbers or markings on stolen cars.” [Id.].

i. Again, Plaintiffs were not (and never have been) in possession of “number
punches that can be used to produce counterfeit VIN plates.” Leichliter
observed extremely thin, flimsy number punches intended for leather
customization. These “number punches” cannot be used on metal.

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h. During the April 28, 2017, search “[y]our affiant [discovered]…frame rales [sic] removed
from motor vehicles which contained VIN markings, said property being illegal to
possess.” [Id.].

i. To begin with, Plaintiffs are not (and never have been) in possession of frame
rails containing VIN markings.

ii. Moreover, it is not “illegal” to possess leftover car parts.

105. In his Affidavit of Complaint, Liechliter states “Agent [Rocky] Johnson…has determined

that…[Plaintiffs’] vehicles were stolen despite the NCIC giving a report that the records were clear.” [Id.].

106. However, Leichliter fails to: (i) attach an Affidavit (or Statement) of Rocky Johnson; (ii) attach

any type of report indicating Plaintiffs’ vehicles were stolen; (iii) mention the fact Defendants confiscated

Plaintiffs’ title(s) and Bill(s) of Sale; (iv) explain the discrepancy with the NCIC system; or (v) otherwise explain

how Rocky Johnson “determined” Plaintiffs’ vehicles were stolen despite NCIC indicating the vehicles were

not stolen.

107. Upon information and belief, Leichliter falsified this information in order to obtain a warrant

to search B. Craig’s business.

108. The explicit language of the search warrant limited Defendants’ search to: (i) stolen motor

vehicles and motorcycles; (ii) motor vehicle parts; (iii) previously removed VIN plates and markings; (iv) tools

and instruments used to remove motor vehicle parts and VIN plates/markings; (v) golf cart parts; (vi) number

punches used to fabricate VIN plates/markings; (vii) tools that could be used to illegally enter motor vehicles

(“slim jims”); and (viii) frame rails with VIN numbers. [See id.].

109. However, contrary to the explicit language of the May 3, 2017, search warrant, Defendants

did not limit their search whatsoever.

110. In addition to those items contained in the search warrant, Defendants also seized the

following property:

a. A 1971 Chevrolet El Camino (and its title);

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b. A brand new .38 caliber Dillinger firearm registered to B. Craig;

c. Two (2) trucks belonging to B. Craig’s customers;

d. Multiple plasma cutters (for use on non-metal);

e. Multiple welders and other welding materials (for use on non-metal);

f. Automobile paint and painting materials;

g. Two (2) DeVilbiss paint-spraying guns;

h. One (1) Sharp paint-spraying gun;

i. A 1970 Oldsmobile Cutlass Plaintiff had owned for thirty (30) years; and

j. Various hand tools.

111. SCSD and Doe(s) failed to prepare an Inventory List delineating the items confiscated from

B. Craig’s business.

112. Accordingly, Plaintiffs are unable to prepare an accurate itemization of missing goods.

113. Defendants did not intend to abide by the unambiguous parameters of the search warrant.

114. For example, Plaintiff B. Craig personally witnessed SCSD’s Doe(s): (i) use their radios to

run automobile VIN numbers through some type of database; (ii) receive indication that the VIN numbers

were “clear” – or words to that effect; and (iii) confiscate the “clear” vehicles anyways.

115. In further example of this reckless disregard for the parameters of the search warrant,

Defendants failed to confiscate hundreds of “motor vehicle parts,” despite their specific itemization in the

same.

116. Again, Defendants clearly were not interested in adhering to the strict parameters of the

search warrant.

117. Moreover, during the search, a customer arrived at B. Craig’s business to retrieve his vehicle

(with title in hand). Doe(s) refused to release the vehicle to the customer. Instead, Doe(s) confiscated the

vehicle.

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118. Defendants are currently in unlawful possession of Plaintiff B. Craig’s personal property and

refuse to return it in accordance with the U.S. Constitution and Tennessee administrative law.

H. May 3, 2017: Defendants search J. Craig’s residence.

119. On May 3, 2017, Ford applied for (and obtained) a warrant to search Plaintiff J. Craig’s

residence. [See Exhibit “4,” attached hereto and incorporated herein by reference].

120. In his application for the search warrant, Ford relies heavily on: (i) items confiscated during

the April 28, 2017, search; and (ii) personal observations arising from the April 28, 2017, search.

121. The Affidavit of Complaint contains numerous inaccuracies and blatant misrepresentations:

a. “Mr. Craig advised detective Hayes that he knew that items on his property were stolen.”
[Id.].

i. Neither B. Craig nor J. Craig ever made such a statement.

b. “Mr. Craig…knows that the property that he is purchasing is stolen.” [Id.].

i. Neither B. Craig nor J. Craig ever made such a statement.

c. “Mr. Craig told Detective Hayes that he knew that he was doing wrong.” [Id.].

i. Neither B. Craig nor J. Craig ever made such a statement.

d. “Many of the vehicles that have been inventoried thus far contained fraudulent
documentation to include titles and insurance cards that contained the altered VIN
numbers and identification.” [Id.].

i. Neither B. Craig nor J. Craig were in possession of “fraudulent documentation


to include titles and insurance cards.” Defendants confiscated Plaintiffs’ actual
insurance cards and titles. Ford has singularly concluded this documentation is
“fraudulent” absent any evidence supporting such a determination.

122. In his Affidavit of Complaint, Ford references five (5) handguns allegedly confiscated from

Plaintiffs’ property on April 28, 2017. [See id.]. Ford claims these handguns “were confirmed to be stolen.”

[Id.].

123. Prior to the April 28, 2017, search, Plaintiffs were not in possession of any firearms (other

than the handgun housed at B. Craig’s business).

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124. Upon information and belief, Defendants planted these handguns on Plaintiffs’ property so

as to “confiscate” these handguns as further “evidence” of Plaintiffs’ wrongdoing.

125. In the alternative, Ford lied about the handguns in the Affidavit of Complaint in order to obtain

a warrant to search J. Craig’s residence.

126. The May 3, 2017, search warrant limits Defendants’ search of J. Craig’s residence to: (i)

electronic devices capable of storing images; (ii) computer, cellphones, and other media capable of storing

electronic information; (iii) books, ledgers, and papers related to the sale of vehicles and/or parts; and (iv)

addresses and telephone numbers of coconspirators.

127. Despite the clearly defined parameters of the search warrant, Does employed by BPD also

seized: (i) a motor; and (ii) another boat from B. Craig’s property.

128. As evidenced above, Defendants did not intend to adhere to the strict parameters of the

search warrant.

I. May 5, 2017: Defendant SCSD arrests J. Craig.

129. On May 5, 2017, a Doe employed by SCSD arrested J. Craig.

130. At the time of his arrest, SCSD failed to inform J. Craig of the charges against him. Instead,

SCSD simply stated, “Washington County wants you picked up” – or words to that effect.

131. Once J. Craig arrived at the Sullivan County Jail (“Jail”), SCSD officials advised J. Craig he

was “charged with everything.”

132. J. Craig was in custody for five (5) days and four (4) nights.

133. During his time at the Jail, SCSD forced J. Craig to sleep on the floor of his holding cell and

refused to provide hygiene products.

134. Moreover, SCSD also refused to administer J. Craig’s medically-necessary blood thinners

to combat blood clots arising from J. Craig’s heart stent.

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J. May 15, 2017: Defendants search B. Craig’s residence.

135. On May 15, 2017, Ford applied for (and obtained) a warrant to search Plaintiff B. Craig’s

residence. [See Exhibit “5,” attached hereto and incorporated herein by reference].

136. However, the Search Warrant describes B. Craig’s three (3) bedroom residence as an

“outbuilding.” [Id.].

137. In his application for the search warrant, Ford relies heavily on: (i) items confiscated during

the April 28, 2017, search; and (ii) personal observations arising from the April 28, 2017, search. [Id.].

138. The Affidavit of Complaint contains numerous inaccuracies and blatant misrepresentations:

a. Plaintiffs “have been suspects in numerous criminal investigations.” [Id.].

i. Prior to the instant matter, no Defendant has ever questioned or investigated


Plaintiffs with respect to any theft or other criminal enterprise.

b. “As of 05/10/2017, approximately fifty two [sic] vehicles that have been inventoried have
been confirmed stolen.” [Id.].

i. Defendants confiscated approximately ten (10) to twelve (12) vehicles from


Plaintiffs’ property during previous searches. Accordingly, Defendants could not
have possibly identified fifty-two (52) stolen vehicles.

c. “Paperwork found in Bradley Craig’s name includes several fraudulent insurance cards
and at least one fraudulent certificate of title.” [Id.].

i. B. Craig was not in possession of “fraudulent documentation to include titles


and insurance cards.” Defendants confiscated Plaintiffs’ actual insurance cards
and titles. Ford has singularly concluded this documentation is “fraudulent”
absent any evidence supporting such a determination.

d. “Numerous vehicles…appear to be missing several body parts…your affiant [sic]


believes …[Plaintiffs] are ‘chopping’ these vehicles and selling the parts online.” [Id.].

i. Plaintiff B. Craig owned and operated a legitimate family business specializing


in automobile “bodywork” and repair. Accordingly, Plaintiff B. Craig regularly
purchased vehicles to use them for their parts. Ford singularly concluded
Plaintiffs were “chopping” vehicles and selling the parts online absent any
evidence supporting such a hypothesis.

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139. Moreover, during the search, Doe(s): (i) entered Plaintiff B. Craig’s bedroom; (ii) emptied his

dresser drawers onto the floor; (iii) removed certain pieces of lingerie belonging to B. Craig’s wife; and (iv)

laid those items of lingerie on B. Craig’s bed as though a woman was wearing them.

IV. CAUSES OF ACTION ARISING FROM THE AERIAL SURVEILLANCE

COUNT I

Unreasonable Search – Aerial Surveillance


Defendants Widener & Blevins
(U.S. Const. amend. IV and XIV and 42 U.S.C. § 1983)

140. Plaintiffs re-allege and incorporate by reference each and every averment set forth in

paragraphs 1-139 herein, inclusive.

141. Plaintiffs plead additionally and alternatively to all other causes of action set forth herein.

142. On April 27, 2017, Defendants Widener and Blevins conducted a warrantless aerial

surveillance of Plaintiffs’ property.

143. Defendants Widener and Blevins flew so low as to render the pilot eye-level with Plaintiffs’

sixty (60) foot tree line.

144. Defendants Widener and Blevins flew so low that the “rotor wash” from the helicopter blades

disrupted Plaintiffs’ property and otherwise interfered with Plaintiffs’ normal use of the premises.

145. In United States v. Saltzman, the Sixth Circuit Court of Appeals upheld the district court’s

decision to suppress evidence arising from a warrantless aerial surveillance conducted at seventy-five (75)

to one hundred twenty-five (125) feet above ground. 1993 U.S. App. LEXIS 7850 (6th Cir. Apr. 5, 1993).

146. Thus, according to the court in Saltzman, Plaintiffs have a reasonable expectation of privacy

in the seventy-five (75) to one hundred twenty-five (125) feet of airspace above their property. See id. at *7.

147. In the present matter, Defendants Widener and Blevins hovered less than sixty (60) feet

above Plaintiffs’ property without a warrant, thereby unlawfully invading Plaintiffs’ reasonable expectation(s)

of privacy.

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148. This warrantless invasion is a gross violation of the protections afforded by the Fourth and

Fourteenth Amendments to the United States Constitution.

149. As a direct and proximate result of Defendants Widener’s and Blevins’s warrantless invasion

of Plaintiffs’ reasonable expectation(s) of privacy, Plaintiffs have suffered injuries and damages and are

entitled to the relief set forth more fully herein.

COUNT II

Unreasonable Search and Seizure


All Individual Defendants
(U.S. Const. amend. IV and XIV and 42 U.S.C. § 1983)

150. Plaintiffs re-allege and incorporate by reference each and every averment set forth in

paragraphs 1-149 herein, inclusive.

151. Plaintiffs plead additionally and alternatively to all other causes of action set forth herein.

152. On or about April 28, 2017, Defendant Ford obtained a warrant to conduct a search of

Plaintiffs’ property.

153. In the Affidavit of Complaint supporting Defendant Ford’s application for a search warrant,

he relies heavily on the footage/images captured during the warrantless aerial surveillance on April 27, 2017.

154. As averred more fully herein, the warrantless aerial surveillance was an unreasonable

search in violation of the Fourth and Fourteenth Amendments to the United States Constitution.

155. Without the initial, illegal flight, Defendant Ford would not have applied for a search warrant.

156. Alternatively, without the initial, illegal flight, Defendant Ford would not have had sufficient

probable cause (which Plaintiffs vehemently dispute) to support the issuance of a search warrant.

157. The April 28, 2017, search was a “fruit of the poisonous tree,” and the search warrant did

not attenuate the taint. See Brown v. Illinois, 422 U.S. 590, 598-99 (1975); Wong Sun v. United States, 371

U.S. 471, 486 (1963); Saltzman, 1993 U.S. App. LEXIS 7850 at *7.

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158. Although the exclusionary rule’s primary function is the suppression of evidence during a

criminal proceeding, Plaintiffs draw an analogy to the present matter: without the unlawful aerial surveillance,

Defendant Ford would not have had sufficient (or any) probable cause to justify the issuance of the April 28,

2017, search warrant.

159. Accordingly, Defendants Ford, Widener, Blevins, Leichliter, Sargent, Hayes, Murray, Price,

and Doe(s) lacked sufficient probable cause to conduct the search of Plaintiffs’ property on April 28, 2017.

160. By conducting the April 28, 2017, search absent probable cause, Defendants Ford, Widener,

Blevins, Leichliter, Sargent, Hayes, Murray, Price, and Doe(s) violated the protections afforded by the Fourth

and Fourteenth Amendments to the United States Constitution.

161. As a direct and proximate result of Defendants’ unlawful search of Plaintiffs’ property on April

28, 2017, Plaintiffs have suffered injuries and damages and are entitled to the relief set forth more fully herein.

COUNT III

Unreasonable Search and Seizure


Defendants Leichliter, Price, and Doe(s)
(U.S. Const. amend. IV and XIV and 42 U.S.C. § 1983)

162. Plaintiffs re-allege and incorporate by reference each and every averment set forth in

paragraphs 1-161 herein, inclusive.

163. Plaintiffs plead additionally and alternatively to all other causes of action set forth herein.

164. On or about May 3, 2017, Defendant Leichliter obtained a warrant to conduct a search of

Plaintiff B. Craig’s workshop.

165. In the Affidavit of Complaint supporting Defendant Leichliter’s application for a search

warrant, he relies heavily on the evidence obtained during the April 28, 2017, search of Plaintiffs’ property.

166. As averred more fully herein, the April 28, 2017, search constituted an unreasonable search

and seizure in violation of the Fourth and Fourteenth Amendments to the United States Constitution.

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167. Without the initial, illegal search, Defendant Leichliter would not have applied for a search

warrant.

168. Alternatively, without the initial, illegal search, Defendant Leichliter would not have had

sufficient probable cause (which Plaintiffs vehemently dispute) to support the issuance of a search warrant.

169. The May 3, 2017, search was a “fruit of the poisonous tree,” and the search warrant did not

attenuate the taint. See Brown, 422 U.S. at 598-99; Wong Sun, 371 U.S. at 486; Saltzman, 1993 U.S. App.

LEXIS 7850 at *7.

170. Although the exclusionary rule’s primary function is the suppression of evidence during a

criminal proceeding, Plaintiffs draw an analogy to the present matter: without the unlawful search on April 28,

2017, Defendant Leichliter would not have had sufficient (or any) probable cause to justify the issuance of

the May 3, 2017, search warrant.

171. Accordingly, Defendants Leichliter, Price, and Doe(s) lacked sufficient probable cause to

conduct the search of Plaintiff B. Craig’s workshop on May 3, 2017.

172. By conducting the May 3, 2017, search absent probable cause, Defendants Leichliter, Price,

and Doe(s) violated the protections afforded by the Fourth and Fourteenth Amendments to the United States

Constitution.

173. As a direct and proximate result of Defendants’ unlawful search of Plaintiff B. Craig’s

workshop on May 3, 2017, Plaintiff B. Craig has suffered injuries and damages and is entitled to the relief set

forth more fully herein.

COUNT IV

Unreasonable Search and Seizure


Defendants Ford and Doe(s)
(U.S. Const. amend. IV and XIV and 42 U.S.C. § 1983)

174. Plaintiffs re-allege and incorporate by reference each and every averment set forth in

paragraphs 1-173 herein, inclusive.

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175. Plaintiffs plead additionally and alternatively to all other causes of action set forth herein.

176. On or about May 3, 2017, Defendant Ford obtained a warrant to conduct a search of Plaintiff

J. Craig’s residence.

177. In the Affidavit of Complaint supporting Defendant Ford’s application for a search warrant,

he relies heavily on the evidence obtained during April 28, 2017, search of Plaintiffs’ property.

178. As discussed more fully herein, the April 28, 2017, search constituted an unreasonable

search and seizure in violation of the Fourth and Fourteenth Amendments to the United States Constitution.

179. Without the initial, illegal search, Defendant Ford would not have applied for a search

warrant.

180. Alternatively, without the initial, illegal search, Defendant Ford would not have had sufficient

probable cause (which Plaintiffs vehemently dispute) to support the issuance of a search warrant.

181. The May 3, 2017, search was a “fruit of the poisonous tree,” and the search warrant did not

attenuate the taint. See Brown, 422 U.S. at 598-99; Wong Sun, 371 U.S. at 486; Saltzman, 1993 U.S. App.

LEXIS 7850 at *7.

182. Although the exclusionary rule’s primary function is the suppression of evidence during a

criminal proceeding, Plaintiffs draw an analogy to the present matter: without the unlawful search on April 28,

2017, Defendant Ford would not have had sufficient (or any) probable cause to justify the issuance of the

May 3, 2017, search warrant.

183. Accordingly, Defendants Ford and Doe(s) lacked sufficient probable cause to conduct the

search of Plaintiff J. Craig’s residence on May 3, 2017.

184. By conducting the May 3, 2017, search absent probable cause, Defendants Ford and Doe(s)

violated the protections afforded by the Fourth and Fourteenth Amendments to the United States

Constitution.

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185. As a direct and proximate result of Defendants’ unlawful search of Plaintiff J. Craig’s

residence on May 3, 2017, Plaintiff J. Craig has suffered injuries and damages and is entitled to the relief set

forth more fully herein.

COUNT V

Unreasonable Search and Seizure


Defendant Ford and Doe(s)
(U.S. Const. amend. IV and XIV and 42 U.S.C. § 1983)

186. Plaintiffs re-allege and incorporate by reference each and every averment set forth in

paragraphs 1-185 herein, inclusive.

187. Plaintiffs plead additionally and alternatively to all other causes of action set forth herein.

188. On or about May 15, 2017, Defendant Ford obtained a warrant to conduct a search of

Plaintiff B. Craig’s residence.

189. In the Affidavit of Complaint supporting Defendant Ford’s application for a search warrant,

he relies heavily on the evidence obtained during April 28, 2017, and May 3, 2017, searches of Plaintiffs’

property.

190. As averred more fully herein, the April 28, 2017, and May 3, 2017, searches constituted

unreasonable searches and seizures in violation of the Fourth and Fourteenth Amendments to the United

States Constitution.

191. Without the initial, illegal searches, Defendant Ford would not have applied for a search

warrant.

192. Alternatively, without the initial, illegal searches, Defendant Ford would not have had

sufficient probable cause (which Plaintiffs vehemently dispute) to support the issuance of a search warrant.

193. The April 28, 2017, and May 3, 2017, searches were the “fruit of the poisonous tree,” and

the search warrant did not attenuate the taint. See Brown, 422 U.S. at 598-99; Wong Sun, 371 U.S. at 486;

Saltzman, 1993 U.S. App. LEXIS 7850 at *7.

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194. Although the exclusionary rule’s primary function is the suppression of evidence during a

criminal proceeding, Plaintiffs draw an analogy to the present matter: without the unlawful searches on April

28, 2017, and again on May 3, 2017, Defendant Ford would not have had sufficient (or any) probable cause

to justify the issuance of the May 15, 2017, search warrant.

195. Accordingly, Defendants Ford and Doe(s) lacked sufficient probable cause to conduct the

search of Plaintiff B. Craig’s residence on May 15, 2017.

196. By conducting the May 15, 2017, search absent probable cause, Defendants Ford and

Doe(s) violated the protections afforded by the Fourth and Fourteenth Amendments to the United States

Constitution.

197. As a direct and proximate result of Defendants’ unlawful search of Plaintiff B. Craig’s

residence on May 15, 2017, Plaintiff B. Craig has suffered injuries and damages and is entitled to the relief

set forth more fully herein.

V. CAUSES OF ACTION ARISING FROM THE SEARCH ON APRIL 28, 2017

COUNT VI

Unreasonable Search and Seizure – Misstatement of Fact in Affidavit


All Individual Defendants
(U.S. Const. amend. IV and XIV and 42 U.S.C. § 1983)

198. Plaintiffs re-allege and incorporate by reference each and every averment set forth in

paragraphs 1-197 herein, inclusive.

199. Plaintiffs plead additionally and alternatively to all other causes of action set forth herein.

200. On or about April 28, 2017, Defendant Ford obtained a warrant to conduct a search of

Plaintiffs’ property.

201. As averred in Paragraph 64, herein, the Affidavit of Complaint supporting Defendant Ford’s

application for a search warrant contains numerous inaccuracies and blatant misrepresentations.

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202. As the applicant, Ford knowingly and intentionally made false statements in the Affidavit of

Complaint.

203. In the alternative, Ford made false statements with a reckless disregard for the truth.

204. The offending information is essential to a determination of probable cause.

205. After excising the false statements, no probable cause exists to justify the issuance of a

search warrant.

206. Accordingly, Defendants Ford, Widener, Blevins, Leichliter, Sargent, Hayes, Murray, Price,

and Doe(s) lacked sufficient probable cause to conduct the search of Plaintiffs’ property on April 28, 2017.

207. By conducting the April 28, 2017, search absent probable cause, Defendants Ford, Widener,

Blevins, Leichliter, Sargent, Hayes, Murray, Price, and Doe(s) violated the protections afforded by the Fourth

and Fourteenth Amendments to the United States Constitution.

208. As a direct and proximate result of Defendants’ unlawful search of Plaintiffs’ property on April

28, 2017, Plaintiffs have suffered injuries and damages and are entitled to the relief set forth more fully herein.

COUNT VII

Unreasonable Search and Seizure – Seizing Items Not Specified


All Individual Defendants
(U.S. Const. amend. IV and XIV and 42 U.S.C. § 1983)

209. Plaintiffs re-allege and incorporate by reference each and every averment set forth in

paragraphs 1-208 herein, inclusive.

210. Plaintiffs plead additionally and alternatively to all other causes of action set forth herein.

211. The explicit language of the April 28, 2017, search warrant limited Defendants’ search to: (i)

the six (6) missing John Deere lawnmowers; (ii) keys to the lawnmowers; (iii) “universal keys used in the

thefts”; and (iv) “[b]urglary tools including bolt cutters and grinders to cut the locks and fencing.” [See Exhibit

1].

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212. However, Defendants Ford, Widener, Blevins, Leichliter, Sargent, Hayes, Murray, Price, and

Doe(s) did not limit their search to the unambiguous parameters of the search warrant.

213. As averred in Paragraph 67, herein, Defendants Ford, Widener, Blevins, Leichliter, Sargent,

Hayes, Murray, Price, and Doe(s) also confiscated an tremendous quantity of Plaintiffs’ personal property.

214. Neither the search warrant nor the Affidavit of Complaint specifically enumerated the items

Defendants confiscated from Plaintiffs’ residences.

215. Moreover, the unlawfully confiscated items did not constitute other fruits, instruments, and/or

evidence of a crime (known or unknown).

216. Accordingly, by unlawfully confiscating the items identified herein, Defendants Ford,

Widener, Blevins, Leichliter, Sargent, Hayes, Murray, Price, and Doe(s) violated the protections afforded by

the Fourth and Fourteenth Amendments to the United States Constitution.

217. As a direct and proximate result of Defendants’ unlawful seizure of Plaintiffs’ property on

April 28, 2017, Plaintiffs have suffered injuries and damages and are entitled to the relief set forth more fully

herein.

COUNT VIII

Deprivation of Property without Due Process of Law


All Individual Defendants
(U.S. Const. amend. V and XIV and 42 U.S.C. § 1983)

218. Plaintiffs re-allege and incorporate by reference each and every averment set forth in

paragraphs 1-217 herein, inclusive.

219. Plaintiffs plead additionally and alternatively to all other causes of action set forth herein.

220. At all times material hereto, Defendants Ford, Widener, Blevins, Leichliter, Sargent, Hayes,

Murray, Price, and Doe(s) lacked probable cause to search (and seize) Plaintiffs’ property.

221. In the alternative, Defendants Ford, Widener, Blevins, Leichliter, Sargent, Hayes, Murray,

Price, and Doe(s) seized items outside the scope of the search warrant.

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222. By seizing Plaintiffs’ property absent probable cause, Defendants Ford, Widener, Blevins,

Leichliter, Sargent, Hayes, Murray, Price, and Doe(s) deprived Plaintiffs of their property without due process

of law and in violation the protections afforded by the Fifth and Fourteenth Amendments to the United States

Constitution.

223. In the alternative, by seizing items outside the scope of the search warrant, Defendants Ford,

Widener, Blevins, Leichliter, Sargent, Hayes, Murray, Price, and Doe(s) deprived Plaintiffs of their property

without due process of law and in violation the protections afforded by the Fifth and Fourteenth Amendments

to the United States Constitution.

224. As a direct and proximate result of Defendants’ deprivation of Plaintiffs’ property without due

process of law, Plaintiffs have suffered injuries and damages and are entitled to the relief set forth more fully

herein.

COUNT IX

Unreasonable Search and Seizure


All Individual Defendants
(U.S. Const. amend. IV and XIV and 42 U.S.C. § 1983)

225. Plaintiffs re-allege and incorporate by reference each and every averment set forth in

paragraphs 1-224 herein, inclusive.

226. Plaintiffs plead additionally and alternatively to all other causes of action set forth herein.

227. On or about April 28, 2017, Defendant Ford obtained a warrant to conduct a search of

property belonging to B. Craig and J. Craig.

228. Ford obtained no warrant permitting a search of property owned by G. Craig.

229. Notwithstanding the foregoing, Defendants Ford, Widener, Blevins, Leichliter, Sargent,

Hayes, Murray, Price, and Doe(s) conducted a warrantless search of G. Craig’s garage.

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230. By conducting the April 28, 2017, search absent either probable cause or a valid search

warrant, Defendants Ford, Widener, Blevins, Leichliter, Sargent, Hayes, Murray, and Doe(s) violated the

protections afforded by the Fourth and Fourteenth Amendments to the United States Constitution.

231. As a direct and proximate result of Defendants’ unlawful search of G. Craig’s garage on April

28, 2017, G. Craig has suffered injuries and damages and is entitled to the relief set forth more fully herein.

COUNT X

Deprivation of Property without Due Process of Law


All Individual Defendants
(U.S. Const. amend. V and XIV and 42 U.S.C. § 1983)

232. Plaintiffs re-allege and incorporate by reference each and every averment set forth in

paragraphs 1-231 herein, inclusive.

233. Plaintiffs plead additionally and alternatively to all other causes of action set forth herein.

234. At all times material hereto, Defendants Ford, Widener, Blevins, Leichliter, Sargent, Hayes,

Murray, Price, and Doe(s) did not possess a valid warrant permitting a search of any property owned by G.

Craig.

235. Despite the foregoing, Defendants Ford, Widener, Blevins, Leichliter, Sargent, Hayes,

Murray, Price, and Doe(s) seized items from G. Craig’s garage.

236. By seizing Plaintiff G. Craig’s property absent either probable cause or a valid search

warrant, Defendants Ford, Widener, Blevins, Leichliter, Sargent, Hayes, Murray, Price, and Doe(s) deprived

Plaintiff G. Craig of his property without due process of law and in violation the protections afforded by the

Fifth and Fourteenth Amendments to the United States Constitution.

237. As a direct and proximate result of Defendants’ deprivation of Plaintiff G. Craig’s property

without due process of law, Plaintiff G. Craig has suffered injuries and damages and is entitled to the relief

set forth more fully herein.

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VI. CAUSES OF ACTION ARISING FROM THE SEARCH OF B. CRAIG’S BUSINESS
ON MAY 3, 2017

COUNT XI

Unreasonable Search and Seizure – Misstatement of Fact in Affidavit


Defendants Leichliter, Price, and Doe(s)
(U.S. Const. amend. IV and XIV and 42 U.S.C. § 1983)

238. Plaintiffs re-allege and incorporate by reference each and every averment set forth in

paragraphs 1-237 herein, inclusive.

239. Plaintiffs plead additionally and alternatively to all other causes of action set forth herein.

240. On or about May 3, 2017, Defendant Leichliter obtained a warrant to conduct a search of

Plaintiff B. Craig’s business.

241. As averred in Paragraph 79, herein, the Affidavit of Complaint supporting Defendant

Leichliter’s application for a search warrant contains numerous inaccuracies and blatant misrepresentations.

242. As the applicant, Leichliter knowingly and intentionally made false statements in the Affidavit

of Complaint.

243. In the alternative, Leichliter made false statements with a reckless disregard for the truth.

244. The offending information is essential to a determination of probable cause.

245. After excising the false statements, no probable cause exists to justify the issuance of a

search warrant.

246. Accordingly, Defendants Leichliter, Price, and Doe(s) lacked sufficient probable cause to

conduct the search of Plaintiff B. Craig’s business on May 3, 2017.

247. By conducting the May 3, 2017, search absent probable cause, Defendants Leichliter, Price,

and Doe(s) violated the protections afforded by the Fourth and Fourteenth Amendments to the United States

Constitution.

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248. As a direct and proximate result of Defendants’ unlawful search of Plaintiff B. Craig’s

business on May 3, 2017, Plaintiff B. Craig has suffered injuries and damages and is entitled to the relief set

forth more fully herein.

COUNT XII

Unreasonable Search and Seizure – Seizing Items Not Specified


Defendants Leichliter, Price and Doe(s)
(U.S. Const. amend. IV and XIV and 42 U.S.C. § 1983)

249. Plaintiffs re-allege and incorporate by reference each and every averment set forth in

paragraphs 1-248 herein, inclusive.

250. Plaintiffs plead additionally and alternatively to all other causes of action contained herein.

251. The explicit language of the May 3, 2017, search warrant limited Defendants’ search to: (i)

stolen motor vehicles and motorcycles; (ii) motor vehicle parts; (iii) previously removed VIN plates and

markings; (iv) tools and instruments used to remove motor vehicle parts and VIN plates/markings; (v) golf

cart parts; (vi) number punches used to fabricate VIN plates/markings; (vii) tools that could be used to illegally

enter motor vehicles (“slim jims”); and (viii) frame rails with VIN numbers. [See Exhibit 3].

252. However, Defendants Leichliter, Price, and Doe(s) did not limit their search to the

unambiguous parameters of the search warrant.

253. As averred in Paragraph 85, herein, Defendants Leichliter, Price, and Doe(s) also

confiscated items outside the scope of the search warrant.

254. Neither the search warrant nor the Affidavit of Complaint specifically enumerated the

additional items Defendants Leichliter, Price, and Doe(s) confiscated from Plaintiff B. Craig’s business.

255. Moreover, the unlawfully confiscated items did not constitute other fruits, instruments, and/or

evidence of a crime (known or unknown).

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256. Accordingly, by unlawfully confiscating the items identified herein, Defendants Leichliter,

Price, and Doe(s) violated the protections afforded by the Fourth and Fourteenth Amendments to the United

States Constitution.

257. As a direct and proximate result of Defendants’ unlawful seizure of Plaintiff B. Craig’s

property on May 3, 2017, Plaintiff B. Craig has suffered injuries and damages and is entitled to the relief set

forth more fully herein.

COUNT XIII

Deprivation of Property without Due Process of Law


Defendants Leichliter, Price, and Doe(s)
(U.S. Const. amend. V and XIV and 42 U.S.C. § 1983)

258. Plaintiffs re-allege and incorporate by reference each and every averment set forth in

paragraphs 1-257 herein, inclusive.

259. Plaintiffs plead additionally and alternatively to all other causes of action contained herein.

260. At all times material hereto, Defendants Leichliter, Price, and Doe(s) lacked probable cause

to search (and seize) Plaintiff B. Craig’s property.

261. In the alternative, Defendants Leichliter, Price, and Doe(s) seized items outside the scope

of the search warrant.

262. By seizing Plaintiff’s property absent probable cause, Defendants Leichliter, Price, and

Doe(s) deprived Plaintiff B. Craig of his property without due process of law and in violation of the protections

afforded by the Fifth and Fourteenth Amendments to the United States Constitution.

263. In the alternative, by seizing items outside the scope of the search warrant, Defendants

Leichliter, Price, and Doe(s) deprived Plaintiff B. Craig of his property without due process of law and in

violation the protections afforded by the Fifth and Fourteenth Amendments to the United States Constitution.

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264. As a direct and proximate result of Defendants’ deprivation of Plaintiff B. Craig’s property

without due process of law, Plaintiff B. Craig has suffered injuries and damages and is entitled to the relief

set forth more fully herein.

VII. CAUSES OF ACTION ARISING FROM THE SEARCH OF J. CRAIG’S RESIDENCE


ON MAY 3, 2017

COUNT XIV

Unreasonable Search and Seizure – Insufficient Warrant


Defendants Ford and Doe(s)
(U.S. Const. amend. IV and XIV and 42 U.S.C. § 1983)

265. Plaintiffs re-allege and incorporate by reference each and every averment set forth in

paragraphs 1-264 herein, inclusive.

266. Plaintiffs plead additionally and alternatively to all other causes of action contained herein.

267. On or about May 3, 2017, Defendant Ford obtained a warrant to conduct a search of Plaintiff

J. Craig’s residence.

268. As averred in Paragraph 94, herein, the Affidavit of Complaint supporting Defendant Ford’s

application for a search warrant contains numerous inaccuracies and blatant misrepresentations.

269. As the applicant, Ford knowingly and intentionally made false statements in the Affidavit of

Complaint.

270. In the alternative, Ford made false statements with a reckless disregard for the truth.

271. The offending information is essential to a determination of probable cause.

272. After excising the false statements, no probable cause exists to justify the issuance of a

search warrant.

273. Accordingly, Defendants Ford and Doe(s) lacked sufficient probable cause to conduct the

search of Plaintiff J. Craig’s residence on May 3, 2017.

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274. By conducting the May 3, 2017, search absent probable cause, Defendants Ford and Doe(s)

violated the protections afforded by the Fourth and Fourteenth Amendments to the United States

Constitution.

275. As a direct and proximate result of Defendants’ unlawful search of Plaintiff J. Craig’s

residence on May 3, 2017, Plaintiff J. Craig has suffered injuries and damages and is entitled to the relief set

forth more fully herein.

COUNT XV

Deprivation of Property without Due Process of Law


Defendants Ford and Doe(s)
(U.S. Const. amend. V and XIV and 42 U.S.C. § 1983)

276. Plaintiffs re-allege and incorporate by reference each and every averment set forth in

paragraphs 1-275 herein, inclusive.

277. Plaintiffs plead additionally and alternatively to all other causes of action set forth herein.

278. At all times material hereto, Defendants Ford and Doe(s) lacked probable cause to search

(and seize) Plaintiff J Craig’s property.

279. By seizing Plaintiff’s property absent probable cause, Defendants Ford and Doe(s) deprived

Plaintiff J. Craig of his property without due process of law and in violation of the protections afforded by the

Fifth and Fourteenth Amendments to the United States Constitution.

280. As a direct and proximate result of Defendants’ deprivation of Plaintiff J. Craig’s property

without due process of law, Plaintiff J. Craig has suffered injuries and damages and is entitled to the relief

set forth more fully herein.

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VIII. CAUSES OF ACTION ARISING FROM J. CRAIG’S ARREST ON MAY 5, 2017

COUNT XVI

Unreasonable Seizure
Defendant Doe
(U.S. Const. amend. IV and XIV and 42 U.S.C. § 1983)

281. Plaintiffs re-allege and incorporate by reference each and every averment set forth in

paragraphs 1-280 herein, inclusive.

282. Plaintiffs plead additionally and alternatively to all other causes of action set forth herein.

283. On May 5, 2017, a Doe employed by SCSD arrested J. Craig without notifying J. Craig of

any charges against him.

284. Several hours later, Sullivan County Jail officials advised J. Craig he was “being charged

with everything.”

285. However, to date, neither SCSD nor any other law enforcement agency has charged J. Craig

with “everything” or anything related thereto.

286. Upon information and belief, Defendant Doe possessed neither probable cause nor an arrest

warrant to justify arresting J. Craig on May 5, 2017, and, instead, used the arrest as a mere intimidation tactic.

287. By arresting Plaintiff J. Craig absent probable cause, Defendant Doe violated the protections

afforded by the Fourth and Fourteenth Amendments to the United States Constitution.

288. As a direct and proximate result of Defendant’s unlawful seizure of J. Craig on May 5, 2017,

Plaintiff J. Craig has suffered injuries and damages and is entitled to the relief set forth more fully herein.

COUNT XVII

Deprivation of Liberty without Due Process of Law


Defendant Doe
(U.S. Const. amend. V and XIV and 42 U.S.C. § 1983)

289. Plaintiffs re-allege and incorporate by reference each and every averment set forth in

paragraphs 1-288 herein, inclusive.

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290. Plaintiffs plead additionally and alternatively to all other causes of action set forth herein.

291. At all times material hereto, Defendant Doe lacked probable cause to arrest J. Craig for

“everything” – however designated.

292. By placing J. Craig under arrest absent probable cause, Defendant Doe deprived J. Craig

of his liberty without due process of law and in violation of the protections afforded by the Fifth and Fourteenth

Amendments to the United States Constitution.

293. As a direct and proximate result of Defendant’s deprivation of J. Craig’s liberty without due

process of law, Plaintiff J. Craig has suffered injuries and damages and is entitled to the relief set forth more

fully herein.

IX. CAUSES OF ACTION ARISING FROM THE SEARCH ON MAY 15, 2017

COUNT XVIII

Unreasonable Search and Seizure – Insufficient Warrant


Defendants Ford and Doe(s)
(U.S. Const. amend. IV and XIV and 42 U.S.C. § 1983)

294. Plaintiffs re-allege and incorporate by reference each and every averment set forth in

paragraphs 1-293 herein, inclusive.

295. Plaintiffs plead additionally and alternatively to all other causes of action set forth herein.

296. On or about May 15, 2017, Defendant Ford obtained a warrant to conduct a search of

Plaintiff B. Craig’s residence.

297. As averred in Paragraph 108, herein, the Affidavit of Complaint supporting Defendant Ford’s

application for a search warrant contains numerous inaccuracies and blatant misrepresentations.

298. As the applicant, Ford knowingly and intentionally made false statements in the Affidavit of

Complaint.

299. In the alternative, Ford made false statements with a reckless disregard for the truth.

300. The offending information is essential to a determination of probable cause.

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301. After excising the false statements, no probable cause exists to justify the issuance of a

search warrant.

302. Accordingly, Defendants Ford and Doe(s) lacked sufficient probable cause to conduct the

search of Plaintiff B. Craig’s residence on May 15, 2017.

303. By conducting the May 15, 2017, search absent probable cause, Defendants Ford and

Doe(s) violated the protections afforded by the Fourth and Fourteenth Amendments to the United States

Constitution.

304. As a direct and proximate result of Defendants’ unlawful search of Plaintiff B. Craig’s

residence on May 15, 2017, Plaintiff B. Craig has suffered injuries and damages and is entitled to the relief

set forth more fully herein.

COUNT XIX

Deprivation of Property without Due Process of Law


Defendants Ford and Doe(s)
(U.S. Const. amend. V and XIV and 42 U.S.C. § 1983)

305. Plaintiffs re-allege and incorporate by reference each and every averment set forth in

paragraphs 1-304 herein, inclusive.

306. Plaintiffs plead additionally and alternatively to all other causes of action set forth herein.

307. At all times material hereto, Defendants Ford and Doe(s) lacked probable cause to search

(and seize property from) Plaintiff B. Craig’s residence.

308. By seizing Plaintiff’s property absent probable cause, Defendants Ford and Doe(s) deprived

Plaintiff B. Craig of his property without due process of law and in violation the protections afforded by the

Fifth and Fourteenth Amendments to the United States Constitution.

309. As a direct and proximate result of Defendants’ deprivation of Plaintiff B. Craig’s property

without due process of law, Plaintiff B. Craig has suffered injuries and damages and is entitled to the relief

set forth more fully herein.

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X. CAUSES OF ACTION ARISING FROM DEPARTMENT POLICY AND PROCEDURE

COUNT XX

Deliberate Indifference
Defendants SCSD, BPD, and WCSD
(42 U.S.C. § 1983)

310. Plaintiffs re-allege and incorporate by reference each and every averment set forth in

paragraphs 1-309 herein, inclusive.

311. Plaintiffs plead additionally and alternatively to all other causes of action set forth herein.

312. By: (i) intentionally including misstatement(s) of material fact in the Affidavit(s) of Complaint;

(ii) unlawfully seizing mass quantities of property outside the scope of the search warrant(s); (iii) seizing items

absent probable cause; (iv) searching Plaintiffs’ property and residences absent probable cause; (v) depriving

Plaintiffs of their property without due process of law; (vi) conducting a warrantless, low-flying aerial

surveillance; and (vii) arresting J. Craig absent either probable cause or a valid arrest warrant, Defendants

Ford, Widener, Blevins, Leichliter, Sargent, and Doe(s) behaved in an objectively unreasonable manner.

313. As evidenced by the alarming number of civil rights complaints filed against SCSD, BPD,

and WCSD, the misconduct of Defendants Ford, Widener, Blevins, Leichliter, Sargent, Hayes, Murray, Price,

and Doe(s) is part of the unspoken policy(ies) and practice(s) of SCSD, BPD, and WCSD.

314. As a matter of practice, by failing to adequately train, supervise, and control their deputies

and officers, SCSD, BPD, and WCSD directly encourage (and are thereby the moving force behind) the very

type of misconduct alleged herein.

315. Such failures manifest deliberate indifference to the rights of citizens such as Plaintiffs.

316. By failing to adequately discipline deputies and officers who have committed prior instances

of similar misconduct, SCSD, BPD, and WCSD cause their deputies and officers to believe their actions will

not be scrutinized and, in that way, directly encourage abuses such as those to which Plaintiffs were

subjected.

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317. By abusing citizens in the manner averred herein absent any finding of wrongdoing, SCSD,

BPD, and WCSD have compromised their respective government policies and thereby given license to the

wrongdoers to continue their misconduct with impunity.

318. By having actual (or constructive) notice of their respective unconstitutional practices, yet

failing to correct them, SCSD, BPD, and WCSD have exhibited deliberate indifference to the constitutional

rights of citizens like Plaintiffs.

319. As a direct and proximate result of Defendants’ respective deliberate indifference, Plaintiffs

have suffered injuries and damages and are entitled to the relief set forth more fully herein.

COUNT XXI

Failure to Train and/or Supervise


Defendants SCSD, BPD, and WCSD

320. Plaintiffs re-allege and incorporate by reference each and every averment set forth in

paragraphs 1-319 herein, inclusive.

321. Plaintiffs plead additionally and alternatively to all other causes of action set forth herein.

322. SCSD, BPD, and WCSD have failed to adequately train their deputies and officers as to the

requirements for a proper investigation, including, without limitation: (i) factors to consider when making a

probable cause determination; (ii) omitting inaccurate (or unsupported) factual allegations from an Affidavit

of Complaint; (iii) abiding by the strictly-defined parameters of a search warrant; (iv) the protections

guaranteed by the Fourth, Fifth, and Fourteenth Amendments; and (v) obtaining a proper warrant before

conducting a search.

323. This failure to adequately train deputies and officers with respect to the foregoing

constitutional requirements (without limitation) presents the obvious potential for false arrest(s), deprivation(s)

of property and liberty absent due process of law, unconstitutional search(es), and unconstitutional

seizure(s).

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324. By failing to adequately train Defendants Ford, Widener, Blevins, Leichliter, Sargent, Hayes,

Murray, Price, and Doe(s) as to the proper way to conduct the type of investigation(s) described herein,

SCSD, BPD, and WCSD were reckless and/or grossly negligent, respectively, thereby creating an

environment conducive to inevitable official misconduct and constitutional violations.

325. Without proper training as to: (i) constitutional requirements; (ii) the rights of citizens to be

free from unreasonable searches and seizures; and (iii) the protections afforded by the Fifth and Fourteenth

Amendments, Defendants’ collective tirade of unconstitutional searches and seizures is virtually certain to

continue.

326. As a direct and proximate result of Defendants’ respective failures to train and/or supervise,

Plaintiffs have suffered injuries and damages and are entitled to the relief set forth more fully herein.

COUNT XXII

Failure to Implement Appropriate Policies, Customs, and Practices


Defendants SCSD, BPD, and WCSD
(42 U.S.C. § 1983)

327. Plaintiffs re-allege and incorporate by reference each and every averment set forth in

paragraphs 1-326 herein, inclusive.

328. Plaintiffs plead additionally and alternatively to all other causes of action set forth herein.

329. SCSD, BPD, and WCSD have implicitly or explicitly adopted and/or implemented careless

and reckless policies, customs, or practices, including, without limitation: (i) arresting individuals absent

probable cause (or a warrant); (ii) conducting searches absent probable cause (or a warrant); (iii) seizing

property absent probable cause (or a warrant); (iv) lying in Affidavit(s) of Complaint; (v) depriving persons of

their property without due process of law; and (vi) depriving persons of their liberty without due process of

law.

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330. By failing to implement appropriate policies, customs, and practices, SCSD, BPD, and

WCSD have been reckless and/or grossly negligent, respectively, thereby creating an environment conducive

to inevitable official misconduct and constitutional violations.

331. As a direct and proximate result of Defendants’ failure to implement appropriate policies,

customs, and practices, Plaintiffs have suffered injuries and damages and are entitled to the relief set forth

more fully herein.

COUNT XXIII

Ratification
Defendants SCSD, BPD, and WCSD

332. Plaintiffs re-allege and incorporate by reference each and every averment set forth in

paragraphs 1-331 herein, inclusive.

333. Plaintiffs plead additionally and alternatively to all other causes of action set forth herein.

334. SCSD, BPD, and WCSD have ratified and acquiesced to the unlawful conduct of Defendants

Ford, Widener, Blevins, Leichliter, Sargent, Hayes, Murray, Price, and Doe(s) by allowing said individuals to

unlawfully search and seize Plaintiffs and their property in violation of respective Department policies and

procedures absent any type of reprimand or mandatory retraining.

335. SCSD, BPD, and WCSD have ratified and acquiesced to the unlawful conduct of Defendants

Ford, Widener, Blevins, Leichliter, Sargent, Hayes, Murray, Price, and Doe(s) by allowing said individuals to

unlawfully search and seize Plaintiffs and their property in violation of the United States Constitution and the

Tennessee Constitution absent any type of reprimand or mandatory retraining.

336. By failing to reprimand Defendants Ford, Widener, Blevins, Leichliter, Sargent, Hayes,

Murray, Price, and Doe(s), Defendants SCSD, BPD, and WCSD have ratified unconstitutional policies,

procedures, and unspoken customs of their respective deputies and officers, thereby ratifying the reckless

and/or grossly negligent practices of these individuals.

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337. Such ratification is so grossly negligent as to demonstrate a willful disregard for the

protections of the Tennessee and United States Constitutions.

338. As a result of this ratification, Plaintiffs have fallen victim to the constitutional violations

alleged herein.

339. As a direct and proximate result of Defendants’ ratification, Plaintiffs have suffered injuries

and damages and are entitled to the relief set forth more fully herein.

XI. CAUSES OF ACTION - SUPPLEMENTAL STATE LAW CLAIMS

COUNT XXIV

Intentional Infliction of Emotional Distress


All Individual Defendants

340. Plaintiffs re-allege and incorporate by reference each and every averment set forth in

paragraphs 1-339 herein, inclusive.

341. Plaintiffs plead additionally and alternatively to all other causes of action set forth herein.

342. As averred herein, the conduct of Defendants Ford, Widener, Blevins, Leichliter, Sargent,

Hayes, Murray, Price, and Doe(s) was intentional or reckless and so outrageous as to not be tolerated by a

civilized society.

343. The foregoing conduct constitutes intentional infliction of emotional distress inflicted upon

Plaintiffs by Defendants Ford, Widener, Blevins, Leichliter, Sargent, Hayes, Murray, Price, and Doe(s).

344. As a direct and proximate result of Defendants’ intentional infliction of emotional distress,

Plaintiffs have suffered mental injury and damages and are entitled to the relief set forth more fully herein.

COUNT XXV

False Imprisonment
Defendant Doe

345. Plaintiffs re-allege and incorporate by reference each and every averment set forth in

paragraphs 1-344 herein, inclusive.

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346. Plaintiffs plead additionally and alternatively to all other causes of action set forth herein.

347. On May 5, 2017, a Doe employed by SCSD arrested J. Craig without notifying J. Craig of

any charges against him.

348. Sullivan County Jail officials eventually advised J. Craig he was “charged with everything.”

349. J. Craig remained in custody for four (4) days and five (5) nights without appearing before a

judiciary.

350. On the fourth day, Sullivan County Jail released J. Craig after J. Craig posted bond.

351. To date, SCSD has failed to charge J. Craig with a crime.

352. Upon information and belief, Defendant Doe lacked probable cause to arrest J. Craig.

353. By arresting J. Craig without probable cause, Defendant Doe unlawfully restrained J. Craig

against his will.

354. The foregoing constitutes false imprisonment of Plaintiff J. Craig by Defendant Doe.

355. As a direct and proximate result of Defendant Doe’s false imprisonment of J. Craig, Plaintiff

J. Craig suffered mental and physical injury and damages and is entitled to the relief set forth more fully

herein.

COUNT XXVI

Negligence Per Se
All Individual Defendants
(Tenn. Code Ann. § 39-14-403)

356. Plaintiffs re-allege and incorporate by reference each and every averment set forth in

paragraphs 1-355 herein, inclusive.

357. Plaintiffs plead additionally and alternatively to all other causes of action set forth herein.

358. Pursuant to Tenn. Code Ann. § 39-16-403, it is unlawful for a public servant acting under

color of office or employment to: (i) intentionally detain, arrest and/or mistreat another individual with

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knowledge that the conduct is unlawful; and/or (ii) intentionally impede another individual in their enjoyment

of any right with knowledge the conduct is unlawful.

359. Defendants Ford, Widener, Blevins, Leichliter, Sargent, Hayes, Murray, Price, and Doe(s)

intentionally impeded Plaintiffs’ right to quiet enjoyment of their property by: (i) lying on the Affidavit(s) of

Complaint; (ii) seizing property grossly outside the scope of the search warrant(s); and (iii) conducting a

warrantless aerial surveillance; and (iv) conducting four (4) searches of Plaintiffs’ property absent probable

cause.

360. Defendants impeded Plaintiffs’ right to quiet enjoyment under color of employment and with

knowledge their conduct was improper and/or unlawful.

361. Moreover, Defendant Doe intentionally detained, arrested and mistreated Plaintiff J. Craig

under color of employment and with knowledge his conduct was improper and/or unlawful.

362. At the time of Plaintiff J. Craig’s arrest, Defendant Doe was unable to provide J. Craig with

a reason for his arrest.

363. The foregoing conduct constitutes negligence per se by Defendants Ford, Widener, Blevins,

Leichliter, Sargent, Hayes, Murray, Price, and Doe(s).

364. As a direct and proximate cause of Defendants’ negligence per se in violation of Tenn. Code

Ann. § 39-16-403, Plaintiffs have suffered injuries and damages and are entitled to the relief set forth more

fully herein.

COUNT XXVII

Conversion
All Individual Defendants

365. Plaintiffs re-allege and incorporate by reference each and every averment set forth in

paragraphs 1-364 herein, inclusive.

366. Plaintiffs plead additionally and alternatively to all other causes of action set forth herein.

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367. Between April 28, 2017, and May 15, 2017, Defendants Ford, Widener, Blevins, Leichliter,

Sargent, Hayes, Murray, Price, and Doe(s) confiscated hundreds of items from Plaintiffs’ properties that: (i)

were not contemplated by the various search warrants; (ii) were not evidence of the commission of a crime;

(iii) were not fruits of a crime; and (iv) did not constitute means of committing a crime.

368. Despite the foregoing, to date, Defendants have failed to return a single item confiscated

from Plaintiffs’ properties.

369. Upon information and belief, Defendants Ford, Widener, Blevins, Leichliter, Sargent, Hayes,

Murray, Price, and Doe(s) confiscated these items for their own personal use and benefit, as evidenced by

their exercise of dominion and control over Plaintiffs’ personal property in blatant defiance of Plaintiffs’

property rights.

370. The foregoing conduct constitutes civil conversion by Defendants Ford, Widener, Blevins,

Leichliter, Sargent, Hayes, Murray, Price, and Doe(s).

371. As a direct and proximate of Defendants’ civil conversion, Plaintiffs have suffered injuries

and damages and are entitled to the relief set forth more fully herein.

XII. DAMAGES

372. Plaintiffs re-allege and incorporate by reference each and every averment set forth in

paragraphs 1-371 herein, inclusive.

373. As a direct and proximate result of each of the foregoing acts, conduct, and violations of the

law alleged herein, Plaintiffs have suffered damages in an amount and according proof including, without

limitation, medical bills, pain and suffering, emotional distress, inconvenience, embarrassment, humiliation,

loss of enjoyment of life – both past and future, loss or impairment of future earning capacity, and other

incidental and consequential damages.

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374. The conduct of Defendants Ford, Widener, Blevins, Leichliter, Sargent, Hayes, Murray,

Price, and Doe(s), as alleged herein, was intentional, fraudulent, malicious and/or reckless. Accordingly,

Plaintiffs seek an award of punitive damages under applicable law in an amount to be determined by a jury.

375. Plaintiffs are entitled to, and seek, recovery of their reasonable attorneys’ fees and costs

pursuant to 42 U.S.C. § 1988.

XIII. PRAYER FOR RELIEF

WHEREFORE, Plaintiffs pray for judgment against Defendants as follows:

1. Compensatory damages in an amount to be awarded by a jury, not less than ONE

HUNDRED FIFTY MILLION DOLLARS AND 00/100 ($150,000,000.00);

2. Punitive damages in an amount to be awarded by a jury, not less than THREE HUNDRED

FIFTY MILLION DOLLARS AND 00/100 ($350,000,000.00);

3. Reasonable attorneys’ fees and costs;

4. Incidental and/or consequential damages in an amount to be determined by a jury; and

5. Any and all further relief this Honorable Court deems just and appropriate.

Respectfully submitted, this 3rd day of April 2018.

BRADLEY CRAIG, GARY CRAIG, and JERRY CRAIG

By: /s/ James Friauf


James W. Friauf (#027238)
Ariana E. L. Mansolino (#035237)
LAW OFFICE OF JAMES W. FRIAUF, PLLC
9724 Kingston Pike, Suite 104
Knoxville, Tennessee 37922
Tele: (865) 236-0347
Fax: (865) 512-9174
Email: james@friauflaw.com
Our File No.: 18-013-CIV

Attorneys for Plaintiffs Bradley Craig, Gary Craig, Jerry Craig

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