Of­fi­cers deny wrong­do­ing in Rock ar­rest

Northwest Arkansas Democrat-Gazette - - NORTHWEST ARKANSAS - RON WOOD

FAYET­TEVILLE — Two Cen­ter­ton po­lice of­fi­cers have de­nied wrong­do­ing al­leged in a law­suit filed by a for­mer high school foot­ball player over his ar­rest.

Ter­rance Rock sued Cen­ter­ton and a num­ber of po­lice of­fi­cers in Wash­ing­ton County Cir­cuit Court in April al­leg­ing wrong­ful ar­rest, ma­li­cious pros­e­cu­tion, vi­o­la­tion of due process, in­va­sion of pri­vacy and other state and fed­eral civil rights claims.

At­tor­neys for of­fi­cers Michael Stu­art and Christo­pher Wil­liam Cum­mings de­nied the al­le­ga­tions and asked a judge to dis­miss the suit for fail­ure to state a claim upon which re­lief could be granted.

The city re­cently filed a sim­i­lar an­swer.

Cen­ter­ton po­lice ar­rested Rock, who was a se­nior, at Fayet­teville High School on Nov. 15 in con­nec­tion with res­i­den­tial bur­glary and theft of prop­erty, both felonies. He was re­leased from the Ben­ton County Jail the next day on a $10,000 bond.

Cen­ter­ton Po­lice Chief Cody Harper later ac­knowl­edged of­fi­cers wrong­fully ar­rested Rock and apol­o­gized in a Nov. 18 news re­lease. Ben­ton County Cir­cuit Judge Robin Green dis­missed the charges against Rock and sealed the case in early De­cem­ber.

The law­suit seeks $750,000 in dam­ages on the due process claim and un­spec­i­fied com­pen­satory and ex­em­plary dam­ages on the other claims.

The ar­rest came from a Sept. 25 in­ci­dent in which a Cen­ter­ton man claimed three teens stole items from his home, ac­cord­ing to a prob­a­ble cause af­fi­davit. The man re­ported speak­ers, a cell­phone charger and two watches taken.

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