Sheriff's department faces lawsuit over party break-up - WMC Action News 5 - Memphis, Tennessee

Sheriff's department faces lawsuit over party break-up


A Middle Tennessee sheriff and his deputies are accused of busting into a family's home, eating their food and doing much more.

The family had decided to have a big get together with friends and loved ones, but when the deputies showed up, the family says things got ugly and even violent. A judge has said those deputies should have never been there in the first place, and now a lawsuit has been filed.

Dan Holloran told the Channel 4 I-Team his family was celebrating at his cabin in Camden when he says Benton County deputies stormed the property, came down his long driveway, through his locked gate and then broke down the locked doors of his home.

Holloran said the deputies moved in on him and his 19-year-old son.

"There's a lot of people wearing badges in this sheriff's department that have no business in law enforcement what so ever. Period," Holloran said.

It all stemmed from the deputies' suspicion there was underage drinking at the party. They even brought in a school bus to haul off more than a 100 guests, and Holloran, who is a businessman in Franklin, said it's not just his word.

The Channel 4 I-Team uncovered sworn testimony from one of the sheriff's own deputies about what happened to Holloran's son that night.

Attorney: Did you see someone assault Mr. Holloran?
Deputy: After he was cuffed and he was lying on the ground, he was on his stomach. The sheriff came up to him and was talking to him, yelling at him, I guess. And (he had) his flashlight to the side of his face and was hollering at him. I couldn't tell you exactly what was said.
Attorney: And struck him?
Deputy: Yes, ma'am, I guess.
Attorney: More than once?
Deputy: No, ma'am.

Holloran spent 15 hours in the Benton County Jail. A judge later dropped all charges against him and his son, saying the deputies didn't have probable cause in the first place.

"For the Hollorans - and for any property owner, or for family out there - police officers just cannot invade your home or your property without a warrant and physically assault you and your family members. They've got to have probable cause to make an arrest," said Holloran's attorney, Andy Allman.

Holloran has now filed a federal lawsuit, and in it, witnesses claim that after the party broke up, deputies consumed food and alcohol they had confiscated at the cabin.

The Channel 4 I-Team had tried repeatedly to get Sheriff Tony King's side of the story, but he has not returned our most recent calls.

When the Channel 4 I-Team first uncovered the sworn testimony from King's own deputy back in September, King denied hitting Holloran's son and said the case was under investigation.

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