Chism lawsuit against WSP heads to federal court

Chism lawsuit against WSP heads to federal court

Credit: Dan Jackson

Todd Chism and his family have filed a $20 million claim against the Washington State Patrol.

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KREM.com

Posted on August 15, 2009 at 3:20 PM

Updated Tuesday, Sep 29 at 2:12 PM

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SPOKANE - The attorneys for Firefighter Todd Chism, wrongly accused in a child pornography investigation, filed a lawsuit in federal court against the Washington State Patrol late last week.

In October Chism's attorneys filed a $20 million tort claim against the Washington State Patrol.

Officials did not respond to the claim, as a result the suit was filed Friday.

Detectives with the WSP's Missing and Exploited Children Task Force arrested Chism in January last year, accusing him of using his credit card to buy child porn.

However, forensics experts later admitted they found no pornography on Chism's computer and that his credit card had a problem with fraudulent charges.

Chism was fully exonerated in April, however the State Patrol never formally apologized for the investigation. Chism has since returned to work with the Spokane Fire Department.

"While acting under the color of state action, the Defendants unreasonably continued an on-going malicious, reckless, and or/willful or wanton violation of Plaintiff Chism's due process rights involving the deprivation of liberty and property interests," according to the lawsuit.

The lawsuit said Chism has suffered economic damages, severe emotional distress, embarrassment, humiliation and mental anguish as a "direct result of this unlawful conduct by the Defendants."

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