Deputy who arrested Mel Gibson is suing County of LA

Last Updated: Sep 08, 2010, 20:26 PM IST

Washington: The LA Sheriff’s Deputy who arrested Mel Gibson in the infamous 2006 arrest is suing the County of LA, claiming he’s the victim of retaliation.

In the lawsuit, Deputy James Mee claims at the time of his arrest, Gibson was a spokesperson for the LA County Sheriff’s Star Program and had filed a public service announcement for Sheriff Lee Baca, whom Mee says was Gibson’s “close friend”.

Mee claims he was “unjustly denied” a promotion, the result of “religious discrimination and retaliation for plaintiff’s religion and his report of anti-Semitic remarks by Gibson”.

The suit claims Sergeant Tracy Palmer erased a videotape showing the arrest of Gibson, who was out of control at the jail after his arrest, and screaming at the top of his lungs and pacing in the cell.

He claims during the events of July 28, 2006, he documented Gibson’s tirade in his initial report but was ordered by superiors to rewrite the report, deleting the slurs.

The lawsuit, filed by attorneys Etan Lorant and Yael Trock, goes on to say the original 4 pages in Mee’s report were published by TMZ.

He was immediately targeted as the alleged TMZ leak, despite the fact that other non-Jewish deputies had access to the 4 pages, he was unmercifully interrogated, received a negative job performance report and claims it was all the result of religious discrimination.

Mee says the department launched several investigations targeting him, to determine if he was the TMZ leak.

Although Mee didn’t mention it, the Sheriff’s Department secretly obtained search warrants for the work and home phone records of Harvey Levin.

The Sheriff’s Department has never determined who leaked the document.

“We are looking forward to telling the whole story and the whole story is not being told in this lawsuit. Ethnicity and gender have nothing to do with any of this,” TMZ.com quoted Sheriff’s spokesperson Steve Whitmore as saying.

“An investigation was launched by the Sheriff’s Department to try and discover who was leaking official documents without authorization. That is a crime,” Whitmore added.

ANI

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