A civil rights lawsuit has been filed on behalf of Jim Howe, Jr. against Cumberland County Sheriff Casey Cox, law enforcement officers in the county, the Tennessee Bureau of Investigation, and the state department of revenue.
The lawsuit specifically names as defendants: Cumberland County Sheriff Casey Cox, Jason Elmore, Jeff Slayton, Jon Wirey, Ronny Howell (state department of revenue investigator) and Elizabeth Williams (investigator for the TBI).
Attorneys for Howe, Ivy Gardner in Crossville and Richard Brooks of Carthage, filed the lawsuit claiming Howe’s civil rights, under the fourth and fourteenth amendments, were violated stemming from an incident last year. The lawsuit states a violation of due process, invasion of privacy and conversion of property took place.
The court document states a search warrant was served August 29 at Big Jim’s Bonding, Howe’s business, allegedly over a late payment of taxes on bonds written. The suit indicates Howe previously made arrangements to have the arrears paid. The lawsuit further states Elizabeth Williams and Jeff Slayton questioned Howe about allegations of him writing bonds in exchange for drugs and sex. Howe denied the allegations. No charges have been filed regarding any of the allegations. Officers searched Big Jim’s Bonding and seized numerous items including nearly $8,000 in cash. Those items were held for a couple of months before some of it was returned to Howe. The lawsuit states the near $8,000 was not returned as well.
The suit alleges Howe suffered a loss in business and damage to his reputation, the conversion of property and cash that has not been returned along with physical, mental and emotional pain and suffering.