Carroll County sheriff deputy behind whistleblower lawsuit speaks out

Published: Sep. 3, 2014 at 9:53 PM EDT|Updated: Oct. 18, 2014 at 10:46 PM EDT
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Carroll County Sheriff Jamie Kinman (Source: WAVE 3 News)
Carroll County Sheriff Jamie Kinman (Source: WAVE 3 News)

CARROLLTON, KY (WAVE) - The chief deputy behind a civil lawsuit against the Carroll County Sheriff's office is now sharing his side of the story.

James Thomas Shaw claims he's been the target of retaliation after he reported that drug evidence was planted in a former deputy's car.

Shaw has been with the Carroll County Sheriff's Office since 2007. He says he is tired of being retaliated against and in the lawsuit he is standing up for what he believes is the truth.

[PREVIOUS STORY: Carroll County sheriff targeted in whistleblower lawsuit]

"This is my hometown and I want to do the right thing," said Shaw.

The nine page lawsuit is filed against Carroll County Sheriff Jamie Kinman, the sheriff's office and the county.

The suit states in November of 2013, Chief Deputy Clay Cable quit his job and asked Shaw to inspect his patrol car before turning the keys over to the sheriff.

[Click to view the lawsuit filed against Carroll County Sheriff, Sheriff's Office and Carroll County]

"I thoroughly inspected the vehicle from front to back, top to bottom," said Shaw.

Shaw says in the lawsuit, the car was clean and days later he was appointed by the sheriff to be chief deputy and then about two weeks later Shaw said the sheriff approached him to inspect the car, not knowing he already did.

"I couldn't believe what I was seeing," said Shaw.

In the lawsuit, Shaw claims he found a bag of prescription pills and states he recognized it as evidence from a criminal case that he investigated and logged.

"I can say beyond no doubt the fact that I observed, some of the things that I observed, but I cannot speak about them are to say the least unethical," said Shaw.

Shaw's lawsuit says he confronted the sheriff about what Shaw claims are "planted" drugs and talked to Kentucky State Police, who confirm they are investigating.

"I just want the truth to come out," said Shaw.

Shaw says after that Sheriff Kinman started to retaliate, changing his shift, sending him all over the state and causing him to suffer severe emotional distress. The lawsuit says Shaw has been on medical leave since June and he is ready to return to work.

"I feel like that I've done nothing wrong, and I'm the one that's being punished," said Shaw.

The lawsuit was filed last week and the Carroll County Sheriff's Office has 20 days to respond. The Kentucky State Police investigation is ongoing and at this time no charges have been filed.

Sheriff Kinman says unfortunately he can't comment at this time. Shaw says he is planning on meeting with the sheriff on Thursday, September 4, to see if he is cleared to come back to work.

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