Watchdog group wants tape scandal lawsuit dropped
SOUTH BEND, Ind. -- Watchdog group People United for Better Government held a press conference Tuesday morning. They demanded the lawsuit filed by four police officers on May 14 be dropped and the tapes at the heart of the tape scandal be played publicly.
Lieutenant David Wells, Sergeant Brian Young, Commander Tim Corbett and Sergeant Steve Richmond filed suit against Henry Davis Jr., the city of South Bend and the South Bend Common Council on May 14.
[Click here to read the lawsuit.]
In December, the same officers won a $500,000 judgment against the city in another lawsuit about the tape recording scandal.
The most recent lawsuit concerns a letter Henry Davis Jr sent to the Department of Justice alleging the officers were recorded making racist remarks.
PUBG says they're upset because the money paid to the officers came directly from taxpayers' pockets.
With the new lawsuit, they're worried that taxpayers could be footing the bill again.
"We would demand that this suit be dismissed immediately or face People United for Better Government intervening in that suit or filing a separate suit demanding the tapes are played, said Mario Sims of People United for Better Government.
Attorney Daniel Pfeifer represents the four officers in the latest suit.
"My clients continue to feel like they are the villains in all of this when they are truly the victims. They did nothing wrong," said Pfeifer.
During a phone interview last week, Pfieifer said he stands by his clients' desire to file a new suit.
"The conversations that they had were illegally recorded. That makes them the victims. The content of the tapes and recording is not relevant at all," said Pfeifer.
Sims says his group disagrees.
"You know it's absolutely absurd that someone would file a lawsuit claiming they're slandered but then at the same time say it's not important what's on the tapes. I mean, that's knucklehead logic," said Sims.
Pfeifer said he wouldn't comment on the statements by the watchdog group PUBG.