Dan Powell Watch/ Blog
We here at the DPW watch have just learned that the United States District Court greenlighted Troy Durham’s lawsuit against disgraced Sheriff Bobby Jones, Somerset County, County Attorney Kirk Simpkins, and against John and Jane Does who are “Somerset County Commissioners and/or the County Administrator and personnel specialists.” This unnamed County Administrator is, of course, none other than Dan Powell.
Somerset County and Kirk Simpkins had tried hard to get this lawsuit thrown out, but this court decision denies their motions to dismiss, meaning that the county, Kirk Simpkins, the former county commissioners, and Dan Powell personally are potentially liable for both standing by while Bobby Jones unlawfully fired Troy Durham and also the current county leadership for allowing the continued mistreatment of Troy Durham.
Senior federal judge Bill Nickerson pulled no punches in his opinion, referring to the latest tactics by Somerset County, at the direction of their attorney Kirk Simpkins to be nothing less than continued retaliation against Troy Durham:
"Perhaps most egregious example of continued retaliation is the decision on the part of some or all of the Defendants to deny Plaintiff back pay for the lengthy period of time in which he was unemployed due to Sheriff Jones’ retaliatory action. Simpkins, an attorney, has proffered what to the Court is a seemingly indefensible position that the County has no obligation to provide back pay to Plaintiff because “[i]t is [Simpkins’] understanding that a judgment for back wages has already been rendered by the U. S. District Court against Sheriff Jones individually.”The court decided that if Troy Durham proves his allegations, Kirk Simpkins would be liable under Section 1983.
ALSO READ....Full Text of Decision Against Somerset County in Durham Case