Ex-jailers, sheriff face another suit

Published 5:00 am Friday, September 24, 2004

A second sexual harassment lawsuit has been filed against twoformer Lincoln County Jail employees and the Lincoln CountySheriff’s Department.

The lawsuit, which presents only one side of a legal argument,alleges that Toni Lynn Newell, of Wesson, was sexually harassed byassistant jail warden Joe Price and jailer/transport officer AndrewGraham while she was incarcerated in March and April. The lawsuit,which was filed Wednesday in U.S. Southern District Court inJackson, seeks more than $3 million in compensatory damages.

Named defendants include Price, Graham, Sheriff Wiley Calcote,the sheriff’s department and the county. Calcote was cited in hissupervisory capacity for an alleged failure to properly train andsupervise employees.

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The county was served with a copy of the complaint Thursday, andit was forwarded to county attorney Bob Allen, Chancery ClerkTillmon Bishop said. Allen was unavailable for comment.

Calcote said this morning he had not seen a copy of thelawsuit.

“Until I get something in my hands, I’m not going to comment onit,” said Calcote, adding he may have a statement later.

Price had no comment on the lawsuit Thursday. Graham also had nocomment but indicated he was prepared to mount a defense.

“I’m ready to go to court with it,” Graham said.

This week’s lawsuit follows a complaint filed in July by StancieJordan Roberts of Bogue Chitto, who also alleged sexual harassmentwhile she was in jail from March to June. Her lawsuit seeks morethan $2 million in damages.

In July, Calcote said Price and Graham were terminated followingan investigation into Roberts’ allegations.

Newell and Roberts are both represented by the Jackson law firmBell, Flechas and Gaggini.