Flint Township View

Lawsuits pending against township

FLINT TWP. — The township board went into closed session at the end of its April 7 meeting to discuss a pending lawsuit with its attorney.

Filed Jan. 23 in U.S. Eastern District Court by plaintiff Mostafa El-Gamal, it is one of at least four pending lawsuits and one of two wrongful arrest complaints against the police department.

Trustee Frank Kasle asked for a board update on all pending suits at the March 18 meeting.

According to information provided by clerk Kim Courts, those law suits include claims of:

• Wrongful arrest by plaintiff Mostafa El-Gamal vs. several police officers.

• Wrongful termination by plaintiff Stan Visser (former township Information Technology Specialist) vs. the Flint Township Board.

• Sewer and water overcharges by plaintiff Sunridge Apartments vs. the Township Board and Genesee County Drain Commission.

°Wrongful arrest for carrying a concealed gun by John David McMorris vs. township police department.

In his suit, El –Gamal alleges seven counts including wrongful arrest, false imprisonment, unlawful search and seizure, conspiracy, violation of MCL 752.795 relation to computer access and police operational policies.

Named as defendants are police officers Randy Kimes (now retired), Michael Nemecheck, Robert Battinkoff and Police Chief George Sippert.

In his complaint, El-Gamal described an incident on Sept. 9, 2011 at a business on South Linden Road where he alleges he was hired to assess the status of computer equipment and other technology needs.

He alleges that he was falsely accused of breaking and entering and using his laptop computer to “hack” the business’ credit card machine, despite evidence to the contrary. He alleges that other officers were subsequently involved in a conspiracy to corroborate a false police report.

In a response filed by attorney Gus Morris, police officers denied all charges.

“Plaintiff was arrested based on probable cause to believe he had committed the crime of breaking and entering, ‘according to court documents.

McMorris’ lawsuit against the police department alleges violation of his right to openly carry a weapon. The case was reassigned in mid-March to district court from Genesee County Circuit Court .

In his complaint, McMorris described circumstances preceding his arrest on December 13, 2013 in which he allegedly was walking along Torrey Road openly carrying a Smith & Wesson handgun outside of his clothing and coat. McMorris alleges that he was incarcerated until Dec. 28, without bond and without charges.

In responding court documents, the arresting officer alleges that McMorris’ weapon was not plainly visible.

Other lawsuits by Visser and Sunridge Apartments both are filed in county circuit court.

Visser was laid off last year from his position as the township’s Information Technology Specialist when the township switched to a service, reportedly to lower costs. Visser appealed the decision and filed suit in June 2013.

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