Law & Justice

Clark BOE's Lewis to Seek $10 Million in Damages After Assault Charges Dismissed

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RAHWAY, NJ – Clark Board of Education member Thomas Lewis, through his attorney, Kevin H. Marino, has served a notice of tort claim against the City of Rahway, its police department, police chief, several named officers and various unnamed others in connection to his arrest on December 28, 2014

The claim seeks damages in the amount of $10 million, citing “false arrest, false imprisonment, malicious prosecution, and defamation.”

Lewis, who is also the Rahway High School athletic director, was “falsely arrested, handcuffed, taken into police custody, transported to police headquarters, fingerprinted, photographed, booked, and charged with the crime of aggravated assault” the notice said.  The case was sent to the Union County prosecutor.

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The notice said that, despite eyewitness reports and a surveillance video that showed the assault charges to be false, those named “pressed forward” with the prosecution and “attempted to influence and intimidate witnesses to provide incriminating evidence against [Lewis].”

The New Jersey Department of Education had notified both the Rahway and Clark School Districts of the charges and advised them that a conviction would result in permanent disqualification from Lewis’s employment, future employment in an educational facility, and his service as a school board member.

The aggravated assault charges against Lewis were dismissed in an order signed by Acting Union County Prosecutor Grace Park on March 2, 2015.

Those named in the notice are the City of Rahway; the Rahway Police Department; John Rodger, Chief of Police of the City of Rahway; Justyna Halat, Scott Maloney, and Joseph Kostick, officers of the Rahway Police Department; Richard Long, a Detective/Sergeant of the Rahway Police Department; Shawn Ganley, a Detective of the Rahway Police Department; and John Does 1 through 10, unnamed agents or employees of the City of Rahway.

The notice stated that the result of “constitutional and common law violations” was that Lewis “has suffered severe and permanent  damages, including mental anguish, emotional distress, and personal and professional embarrassment, in the amount of $10 million.”

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