Chattanooga Man Arrested Erroneously While Starting On Family Vacation To Iceland Sues For $27 Million

Tuesday, February 19, 2019

A Chattanooga man who was arrested erroneously while starting on a family vacation to Iceland has filed suit for $27 million.

George Harrison is suing the city and Chattanooga Police officers Kaumar Hughes and Mathew Lynch in Federal Court.

He is suing the city for $5 million and the officers for $1 million each. He is asking $20 million punitive damages in the complaint filed by attorney Clayton Whittaker.

The suit says on May 18, 2018, officers were called to 4700 Montview Dr. where they encountered Rene Richards, who said she was assaulted by her boyfriend. She named him George Harris or George Harrison.

The suit says, "Ms. Richards gave a list of identifiers. She stated he was a middle aged white male in his 50’s, with a red beard and that he drove a black Dodge truck, and had a large mole on his left arm. Officers used their computers to search for “George Harrison” in the driver’s license data base. Officers accessed a picture of the Plaintiff and showed it to the victim at Erlanger Hospital. She identified the plaintiff. Ms. Richards was injured from a severe beating and was intoxicated.

"Officers were unable to access the vehicle registration to corroborate other information about the vehicle driven by the suspect due to malfunction of the system. Further, officers did not seek access to vehicle records to exculpate Plaintiff. The Plaintiff George Harrison’s physical identifiers did not match the description given by the victim. Officers did not assess the investigation and all of the factors to determine if probable cause existed."

 Officers Hughes and Lynch issued the warrant for George Harrison after consultation with the special victim unit, it was stated.

On June 30, 2018, Mr. Harrison and wife Mallory arrived by plane at the Baltimore Washington Marshal airport. George and Mallory Harrison met with Kay Olive, his mother and other family members. The family was traveling to Iceland for a family vacation.

Upon attempting to board the plane for Iceland, George Harrison was arrested by Homeland Security and local police and taken into custody. He was handcuffed and taken to a secure area in the airport. The arrest occurred in the presence of his family and other travelers. After hours passed the arrest warrant from Hamilton County was transmitted to the local police and George Harrison was taken from the airport to the Anne Arundel County, Maryland detention center and jail.

The suit says Mr. Harrison and the remainder of the family were unable to travel on the family vacation. He remained in the custody of the Sherriff of Anne Arundel County for three days.

The case in Hamilton County afterward was dismissed based upon Mr. Harrison being misidentified.

The suit says the victim of the aggravated assault, Rene Richards, " indicated that George was misidentified."

Mr. Harrison was released from custody on July 2, 2018.

The suit says he suffered injury to his shoulders from being handcuffed by police in Anne Arundel County.

It says he "immediately and continually communicated to Defendant City of Chattanooga that they had arrested the wrong person and that the investigation misidentified him and that he was falsely arrested. The city of Chattanooga did not release the Plaintiff."

The suit said the city did not properly train the officers in making certain they were arresting the correct person.


Upcoming City Council Agenda For Tuesday

East Ridge Celebrating Its 100th Birthday This Saturday

Georgia Has 126 More Coronavirus Deaths And 3,236 New Cases


Here is the upcoming City Council agenda for Tuesday: I. Call to Order by Chairman Henderson. II. Pledge of Allegiance/Invocation (Councilwoman Dotley). III. Special Presentation. ... (click for more)

The city of East Ridge will be celebrating its centennial on Saturday at Camp Jordan beginning at 8 a.m. with a 5K marathon and ending with fireworks at 9 p.m. Throughout the day there will be ... (click for more)

Georgia state health officials reported on Friday there have been 126 additional deaths due to the coronavirus. The current total is 21,991. There are 3,236 new cases as that total reaches ... (click for more)



Breaking News

Upcoming City Council Agenda For Tuesday

Here is the upcoming City Council agenda for Tuesday: I. Call to Order by Chairman Henderson. II. Pledge of Allegiance/Invocation (Councilwoman Dotley). III. Special Presentation. Certified Tax Rate Public Hearing (Personal Appearance through 8:00 p.m.) IV. Minute Approval. V. Ordinances – Final Reading: FINANCE a. An ordinance, hereinafter also ... (click for more)

East Ridge Celebrating Its 100th Birthday This Saturday

The city of East Ridge will be celebrating its centennial on Saturday at Camp Jordan beginning at 8 a.m. with a 5K marathon and ending with fireworks at 9 p.m. Throughout the day there will be a market with 90 vendors, food trucks, a beer garden, games, family activities and live music from six bands. On Oct. 5 the city will also host the National Night Out, to promote partnerships ... (click for more)

Opinion

Why Is All The New Building Not Saving Us From A 40-Cent City Property Tax Increase? - And Response

With the number of homes, apartments and condos built downtown, why is a 40 percent property tax increase necessary? Are these new structures on the paying property tax role? I need to know what’s going on downtown and why isn’t that money benefiting the city? Georgia Vaughn * * * The answer is that tax exemptions for these projects have been given out freely and ... (click for more)

Roy Exum: The Degradation Of Nurses

Debbie Moore-Black, is a registered nurse whose blogs regularly appear on the medical news website, KevinMD.com. With the unearthly demands of COVID and historic lack of concern for the nursing populace, she wrote this week on the degradation and the devaluation of the nation’s nursing force. Perhaps we should all listen: * * * TIME WILL TELL IF LESSONS WILL BE LEARNED ... (click for more)

Sports

Game Notes: Tennessee At Florida

Tennessee hits the road for the first time this season with a showdown against SEC East rival Florida in primetime on Saturday night in Gainesville. The Vols are coming off a 56-0 shutout of Tennessee Tech last weekend and will look to carry that momentum into Saturday as they look to spring the upset against the 11th-ranked Gators. BROADCAST INFO Saturday's game will be ... (click for more)

UTC Women's Golf Returns To Action Friday In Nashville

Well that didn’t take long. The Chattanooga Mocs left Tennessee’s Mercedes-Benz Collegiate on Tuesday and take the tee Friday morning at the Vanderbilt Legends Club for the Mason Rudolph Championships. The ladies do so with the momentum of a strong start in Knoxville. The Mocs finished tied for third behind runner-up individual performances by Esme Hamilton and Dorota Zalewska. ... (click for more)