A former Abbeville police chief is seeking relief through a First Amendment complaint after being fired in April after criticizing the Henry County Sheriff’s Office.
Attorneys for Noel Vanlandingham recently filed an amended complaint adding First Amendment retaliation to his client’s lawsuit.
Vandlandingham’s dismissal stems from a recorded conversation he had with a resident related to her arrest by the Sheriff’s Office. The conversation was recorded by the resident.
During the conversation, Vanlandingham is purportedly critical of a Henry County sheriff’s deputy who arrested the resident and the manner in which he believes the Sheriff’s Office is run. The resident posted the conversation online.
Abbeville City Council members voted to fire Vanlandingham at a council meeting April 6.
111cc彩票下载安卓In the amended complaint, attorney Dustin Fowler says his client has a federally protected right to free speech under the First Amendment to the Constitution.
111cc彩票下载安卓The complaint states that when his client spoke with the woman, he spoke as a resident on a matter of public concern; when he opposed and criticized the conduct of the defendants, he again did so as a resident on a matter of public concern; and when he filed his lawsuit against the city of Abbeville alleging a violation of the First Amendment, he engaged in an activity protected by the First Amendment. Fowler goes on to say that Vanlandingham’s protected speech caused the city’s decision to terminate him.
Vanlandingham is seeking back pay calculated on quarterly basis, including interest; compensatory damages to be determined by the trier of fact; punitive damages; reinstatement, reasonable front pay or both; expungement of the suspension and termination from his record; relief that is fair, just and equitable; interest; costs, including reasonable attorney fees; and annual training conducted by a third party for a period of 10 years for the city of Abbeville’s elected officials, managers, supervisor and human resources employees on avoiding retaliation in employment.
111cc彩票下载安卓Fowler is requesting a jury trial.