JACKSON COUNTY, MS (WLOX) - Mike Byrd is out of office, but the legal troubles continue to mount for Jackson County. WLOX has learned more lawsuits are being drafted against the county.
Attorney Adam Miller already represents five people suing Mike Byrd and Jackson County over alleged misconduct by the Jackson County Sheriff's Department. Now that Byrd's criminal cases are over, Miller said he's about to file several more in the coming weeks.
Earlier this year, Layne Brushaber sat down with WLOX News about his ordeal after being arrested by the Jackson County Sheriff's Department on child pornography charges back in 2011. Miller said he has three other clients who were brought up on child porn charges that were later dropped for lack of evidence. Those clients include former Ocean Springs alderman James Hagan, Ron Tuscan, and Mark Pears. Miller has also filed suit on behalf of Dwight Braswell over an alleged beating at the Jackson County Jail.
Miller told WLOX, "All of the cases have been filed in federal court. With actual and punitive damages, each lawsuit seeks between $20 and $30 million."
While Byrd is no longer sheriff, attorney Miller is preparing to file several more lawsuits over the next few weeks. Byrd was not convicted on any wrong doing involving Miller's clients. Miller said Byrd's guilty pleas to a federal charge of witness tampering and a state charge of intimidating a witness might be factors in his cases.
"I am not sure what the impact will be, but certainly the federal and state guilty pleas demonstrate the type of conduct by the sheriff and the sheriff's department that has been alleged in our lawsuits against the sheriff and the county."
Miller said so far no trial date has been set yet for any of his lawsuits.