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County hires Sacramento legal firm

TIM WILLIS, Sun News Service

A Sacramento legal firm will be enlisted in Nevada County’s fight against lawsuits involving a former Truckee jailer’s alleged sexual assaults against female inmates.

County supervisors on Tuesday agreed to hire the firm of Porter, Simon Weiberg and Delehant to defend the county against the expected lawsuits.

The firm was recommended “due to the volume of potential litigation arising out of the operation of the Truckee jail,” explained a memorandum from Chief Deputy County Counsel Mark Rathe.

Former Truckee jailer Bobby “B.A.” Rutledge, 29, is accused of sexually molesting 14 female inmates. Rutledge faces a 29-count criminal case, with charges ranging from rape to illegal strip searchers. Rutledge is currently free on bail.

Nine of the women Rutledge reportedly molested have filed claims against the county. One case was settled for less than $20,000. Lawsuits are expected to arise out of the remaining claims.

“I think it is fair to say many of those claims will ripen into lawsuits,” said County Counsel James Flageollet.

The Sacramento firm’s legal services will be provided by attorney Terence J. Cassidy. He has expertise with civil-rights actions, which are the basis for most of the claims against the county, Flageollet said.

The agreement for legal services includes a payment cap of $30,000, but Flageollet said the amount can be amended later as needed.

Sierra Sun E-mail: sun@tahoe.com

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