Boone County Hires Four Attorneys to Defend in Ferguson Lawsuit

2 years 7 months 3 weeks ago April 16, 2014 Apr 16, 2014 Wednesday, April 16 2014 Wednesday, April 16, 2014 3:08:00 PM CDT in News
By: Katie Kiebles, KOMU 8 Digital Producer

COLUMBIA - Boone County has hired four attorneys to defend itself in the Ryan Ferguson lawsuit, Boone County Counselor C.J. Dykhouse confirmed Wednesday.

The three attorneys involved in the litigation are Columbia attorney Dan Simon, who will be representing former Boone County Prosecuting Attorney Kevin Crane, Jefferson City attorney Michael Berry, who will be representing Investigator William Haws and St. Louis attorney Russ Watters will be representing Investigator Ben White and Boone County.

The fourth attorney, Scott Pool, was hired to give a second opinion on insurance coverage.

The lawsuit, filed in the U.S. District Court for the Western District of Missouri, states Ferguson will pursue $75 million in compensatory and actual damages and $25 million in punitive damages.

The lawsuit, which thoroughly details the police investigation and court cases, alleges police took missteps in the investigation; fabricated evidence to "induce" Ferguson's alleged accomplice, Charles Erickson, to implicate and testify against Ferguson; and conspired to implicate Ferguson.

Ferguson was convicted in 2005 of second-degree murder in the 2001 death of Columbia Daily Tribune Sports Editor Kent Heitholt.

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