Beaver man sues over Lawrence County jail stay

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A Beaver County man who was brought into court and jailed in Lawrence County for 40 days on a probation violation filed suit Wednesday, claiming he was not on probation at that time.

Jacob G. Knotts of Darlington wrote that he was arrested Feb. 6 in Rochester, held in the Beaver County Jail for four days and then sent to the Lawrence County Correctional Center, where he stayed until March 16.

The reason, the complaint said, was a warrant issued by the Lawrence County Adult Probation Department that said he had not reported in as required. The warrant was void, it said, because he "was not on probation and was not in violation of any directive" of the department. The complaint said that on "many occasions," he told probation office employees, judges and prosecutors that he "was no longer on probation at the time of his arrest," but he was released only after he hired an attorney.

His "name, credit and reputation" were damaged by the incarceration, according to the complaint in U.S. District Court by attorneys James Mall and Tony Thompson. The false arrest and malicious prosecution violated his due process rights, it said.

Neither the plaintiff's attorneys nor the Lawrence County solicitor could be reached for comment.



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