- Associated Press - Thursday, April 6, 2017

TOPEKA, Kan. (AP) - A federal judge has dismissed a lawsuit that alleged a Kansas sheriff fired a detective for refusing to end an investigation into a man facing sex crime charges.

U.S. District Senior Judge Sam Crow dismissed the suit Friday, the Topeka Capital-Journal (https://bit.ly/2oMJF3k ) reported. Crow also ruled that Jackson County Sheriff Tim Morse could recover court costs from former senior detective Al Dunn, who filed the lawsuit in October.

Morse told the newspaper in October that the lawsuit was “baseless” and “ludicrous.”

Dunn alleged that Morse tried to suppress an investigation into Jacob Ewing, who is accused of sexually assaulting five women and a teenager. Ewing, of Holton, has pleaded not guilty.

Dunn’s lawsuit alleged Morse faced complaints from Ewing’s family and friends who believed they could influence Morse’s bid for re-election. The suit alleged Morse pressured Dunn to back off of the investigation out of political need.

Citing alleged violations of free speech and other constitutional rights, the former chief detective sought about $150,000 for lost salary and mental and emotional distress.

In Friday’s ruling, Crow said he found “no viable constitutional” violations.

Toby Crouse, Morse’s attorney, said Dunn was suspended and terminated for insubordination. Crouse said Dunn performed poorly while working on the sex assault investigation and a separate case, and violated Morse’s instructions related to seeking search warrants.

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Information from: The Topeka (Kan.) Capital-Journal, https://www.cjonline.com

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