Glasgow Daily Times, Glasgow, KY

Local News

February 3, 2014

Stinnett wants summary judgment against Minor

GLASGOW — The man who sued Barren County’s former sheriff and a handful of deputies is asking a judge to issue a decision regarding one of the deputies.

In a federal civil lawsuit, Billy Randall Stinnett singles out former deputy Adam Minor in a request for partial summary judgment. Minor was a cooperating witness for the prosecution in a related federal criminal case, and he received probation for admitting he participated in an alleged beating of a restrained Stinnett after a police pursuit ended in Glasgow in February 2010.

In the criminal case, a federal jury convicted former Barren County Sheriff Chris Eaton of two counts of witness tampering and acquitted deputies Aaron Bennett and Eric Guffey of all charges. Stinnett pleaded guilty to one count of false statement related to lying to federal investigators, and the charges against Deputy Bobby McCown were dropped before the case reached trial. Eaton is appealing his conviction.

The civil case, though, still names all five officers as defendants.

Documents filed Thursday argue that Minor’s testimony “establishes that Minor used excessive force during the arrest of Stinnett and violated Stinnett’s constitutional rights.”

Minor testified that he kicked Stinnett twice in his thigh while Stinnett was handcuffed because the former deputy was mad after the pursuit and the dangerous situation in which Stinnett had put law enforcement officers and the public. He also admitted to smacking Stinnett’s hand with a flashlight.

Minor also testified that Bennett punched Stinnett in the head five to 10 times and that Bennett said he broke his hand, after which Bennett moved to Stinnett’s other side and began striking him with a baton. Minor further said in court that neither he nor Guffey tried to stop Bennett.

“Defendant Minor’s testimony leaves no room for doubt that he violated Plaintiff’s constitutional rights while acting under color of state law as a deputy sheriff,” the memorandum asserts.

A proposed order was submitted along with the motion and memorandum that, if the judge were to sign it, would serve as a judgment against Minor “with respect to his liability for [Stinnett’s] causes of action of [U.S. Code], assault and battery.”

Stinnett had asked for a jury trial for the civil case and monetary awards for compensation and as punishment to the defendants.

Stinnett, after a plea agreement, was convicted of manufacturing methamphetamine and at least three other charges related to that, plus first-degree fleeing or evading police (motor vehicle), first-degree wanton endangerment and third-degree assault of a police or probation officer.

He was sentenced to 20 years, five of which were because he is a persistent felony offender. He was scheduled to be paroled as early as Monday, according to the Kentucky Department of Corrections.

Read more in the print or digital Glasgow Daily Times.

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