California Man’s Lawsuit Against Morgan County, City of Jacksonville Dismissed

By Benjamin Cox on May 5, 2023 at 6:35pm

A California man who sued the Morgan County Sheriff’s Office and the City of Jacksonville for what he felt was illegal profiling as an out of state driver has dropped his federal lawsuit.

Attorney Louis J. Meyer of Peoria law firm Meyer & Kiss filed civil action in the U.S. District Court for the Central District of Illinois back in August 2021 on behalf of Benjamin Stone of California.

The lawsuit accused Morgan County Sheriff’s Deputy Derek Suttles of following Stone on Interstate 72 for more than a mile on May 9, 2021 while he was traveling through the area from Washington D.C. back to his home state. Stone alleged in the suit that he was illegally detained by Suttles at a South Jacksonville hotel parking lot and had his vehicle allegedly illegally searched by Jacksonville Police K-9 Unit Officer Jordan Poeschel and his K-9 partner. Poeschel’s K-9 partner is alleged to have alerted on the vehicle. Stone was never cited for any crime.

The 2021 lawsuit filed on behalf of Stone was similar to suits filed against the city and county in 2015 and 2016, which were settled out of court, according to a report from the Jacksonville Journal-Courier.

A stipulation for dismissal was filed on January 31st by Meyer and the suit was dismissed with prejudice by Judge Sue E. Myerscough. Each party was to bear its own legal costs in the case.