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Campbell Co. sued for $25M after deputies accused of beating inmate

From WVLT -


A $25 million federal lawsuit has been filed against Campbell County and four Campbell County Sheriff's Office employees after they were accused of beating an inmate.

According to the lawsuit filed on June 1 2020, Nathan Ling was arrested in June 2019 on charges of evading arrest after someone called 911 to report a suspicious vehicle near Wildwood Circle in LaFollette.

According to court documents, officers found Ling and two others inside the car which had been reported stolen. A woman in the vehicle reportedly admitted she had taken the vehicle from her grandparents without permission.

Officers then learned Ling was wanted on felony warrants out of Michigan, and he attempted to flee on foot. Documents show Ling hit his head during the chase and was knocked unconscious. Officers reported that when he awoke, he became combative and tried to kick and bite officers.

Then, according to the lawsuit, Ling was beaten in the jail's intake room and allegedly left to lay on a concrete floor for at least seven hours without medical treatment.

When medical staff arrived to evaluate Ling's injuries, he was taken to a Jacksboro hospital, then airlifted to UT Medical Center where he was diagnosed with a collapsed lung, multiple facial fractures, a broken arm, and a traumatic brain injury.

The lawsuit alleges the officers were seen on surveillance video taking out and cell phone and posing for photos with Ling as the floor was covered in his blood. He allegedly remained handcuffed throughout the incident.

Sheriff's office employees Deputy Justin Crabtree, Deputy Dakota Williams, Corporal Sean Brown, and Correctional Officer Joshua Miller are all named in the lawsuit which accuses them of using excessive force during Ling's arrest.

Crabtree has since been fired and the other deputies put on leave.

Neither the cell phone mentioned in the suit or the photo that appears to have been taken of Ling has been located, although the lawsuit accuses the officer who took the photo of sharing it with other employees.

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