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Friday, Aug. 22, 2014

Delay asked in detectives' lawsuit

Friday, August 17, 2012

Four detectives suing the sheriff and county for unpaid overtime are asking for an additional month to hear depositions in their case.

A year has passed since Sheriff Randall Boyce and the county were sued by David Sakich, Kevin Holton, Scott Jones, Todd Hammond "and others similarly situated" under the Fair Labor Standards Act.

The four filed the litigation claiming they were denied overtime and straight time compensation and were worked "off the clock," also alleging they were retaliated against for exposing the issue. Sakich and Holton also claim they were demoted from detectives to patrol duty for "whistleblowing activity."

In May, U.S. Magistrate Judge William B. Mitchell Carter ordered a deadline of Aug. 13 for discovery requests in the case, but attorneys Terry A. Fann and Kerry Knox are now asking that it be extended to Sept. 13.

Unable to appear

Fann and Knox said that the discovery depositions were scheduled to be completed on Aug. 10, and that witnesses were to be deposed by attorneys for the detectives on Aug. 8 and 10.

However, they learned on Aug. 7 that several of the witnesses who had been given notices "were unable to appear to give their depositions for various reasons." The lawyers said that they had "worked diligently to complete discovery" by the deadline, but at least three persons were unable to appear.

Back in May, attorneys representing the four officers claim that Bedford County had not responded to a number of discovery requests, which resulted in Magistrate Carter establishing the August deadline.

Last month, both sides in the suit released their witness lists, with the detectives stating they would call a total of 31 persons to the stand and "may call" an additional 16 people to testify, while the county will call a total of 14 witnesses and possibly five others.

A jury trial in the case is set for Nov. 12 in federal court in Winchester.