- Associated Press - Sunday, May 7, 2017

SMITHFIELD, N.C. (AP) - Judges say North Carolina taxpayers must pay $125,000 to the attorney of a state trooper fired after kicking his canine partner and later reinstated.

The News & Observer of Raleigh reports (https://bit.ly/2pVenIt ) the Court of Appeals ruled the payout is large because state officials continued fighting a losing series of court rulings favoring fired Highway Patrol trooper Charles Jones.

The appeals court last month ruled that Smithfield attorney Jack O’Hale should be paid $300 an hour for his work on Jones’ case.

Jones returned to work in 2012, about five years after being fired on the orders of then-Gov. Mike Easley after video showed the trooper hoisting his dog off the ground and kicking him.

Courts ruled his firing was improper, and Jones received back pay of more than $200,000.

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Information from: The News & Observer, https://www.newsobserver.com

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