Albuquerque Journal (Albuquerque, NM)

Ex-Chief Violated Rights, Jury Says.(Final)

Byline: Scott Sandlin Journal Staff Writer

Plaintiff Awarded $1 in Damages

Former Hobbs Police Chief Tony Knott intentionally retaliated against a court-appointed special master after a ruling police viewed as unfavorable, a federal jury decided Wednesday.

The jury said Knott's retaliation violated the free speech rights of Michael Collopy, an attorney who had served 16 years as special master in children's court issues for the Lea County District Court.

Collopy presided over a June 1997 juvenile hearing involving Michael Hodge, one of several black youths arrested at a high school football game the previous fall in a racially charged incident. …

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