Use of force was justified

Jury finds in favor of deputy in suit over DUI arrest

Print Article

COEUR d'ALENE - A jury in U.S. District Court returned a verdict in favor of a sheriff's deputy in a lawsuit filed by a man who claimed excessive force was used in his arrest.

Bonner County resident Joel Petty, 62, was arrested during the evening hours of March 8, 2008, for driving under the influence of alcohol following a two-vehicle accident on Schweitzer Mountain Road.

Bonner County Sheriff's Office deputy Clinton Mattingley responded to the accident scene. A passenger in the other vehicle suffered a back injury.

The deputy noticed the odor of alcohol on Petty, who also was unsteady on his feet and had slurred speech.

Field sobriety evaluations were performed on Petty before he was then arrested for DUI. Petty would later plead guilty to the charge.

In his lawsuit, Petty claimed that his civil rights had been violated because Mattingley handcuffed him with his hands behind his back after Petty complained of problems with his joints and a prior shoulder surgery.

Petty claimed Mattingley caused a right shoulder rotator cuff injury and that Mattingley's actions amounted to excessive force.

The seven-person jury disagreed with Petty's claims.

An additional charge against the Bonner County Sheriff's Office for failing to train on proper arrest procedures was dismissed by a judge prior to trial.

The sheriff's department and Mattingley were represented by Coeur d'Alene attorney Peter C. Erbland. Petty and his wife were represented by attorney Greg Devlin, of Spokane.

Erbland said, "The amount of force that is necessary in a particular situation must be judged from the perspective of a reasonable officer on the scene, rather than with the 20/20 vision of hindsight."

Erbland said Mattingley handled the accident scene - involving six people - without backup.

The jury returned the verdict Friday.

Print Article

Read More Local News

Avista spokesman, GOP spar over utility sale

November 17, 2018 at 5:00 am | Coeur d'Alene Press POST FALLS — Avista’s senior director for government relations weathered a storm of questions at Friday’s Panhandle Pachyderms meeting. The guest speaker, Collins Sprague, heard accusations from th...


Read More

Video voyeur placed on probation

November 17, 2018 at 5:00 am | Coeur d'Alene Press COEUR d’ALENE — A 59-year-old physician’s assistant guilty of video voyeurism for using a hidden camera to watch a teenage girl undress was placed on probation Friday after completing a prison rider ...


Read More

Despite disabilities, young Hayden man is determined to give back

November 17, 2018 at 5:00 am | Coeur d'Alene Press By DEVIN WEEKS Staff Writer COEUR d’ALENE — Aaron Findlay zips around the quiet banquet room of Lake City Center in his electric wheelchair like a man on a mission. He stops at each table, ginge...


Read More

Parking garage opens Tuesday

November 17, 2018 at 5:00 am | Coeur d'Alene Press COEUR d’ALENE — The crane that towered for months from Coeur d’Alene Avenue over the city’s downtown area is gone. The pavement between Third and Fourth streets is once again visible, and the view ...


Read More

Contact Us

(208) 664-8176
215 N. Second St
Coeur d'Alene, Idaho 83814

©2018 The Coeur d'Alene Press Terms of Use Privacy Policy