Thursday, August 03, 2006

Townsend v. Shook ... and Vice Versa

Here's the complete text of Sheriff Mark Shook's response to the Townsend allegations, together with the sheriff's counterclaim of defamation against Townsend (which starts on page 10 of the document linked above).

Mainly, all the Townsend allegations are flatly denied.

For the county's part, it maintains that it cannot properly be a defendant in this case because "defendant Mark William Shook is not an agent or employee of Watauga County." He's an independently elected public official.

The counterclaim of defamation against Townsend is based pretty much entirely on the testimony of a single woman (who is named four times on page 11 of the document referenced above), who alleges that Paula Townsend told her that Sheriff Shook "forced himself on her," and that the sheriff "believes" that Townsend has said these same or similar words to others, and that not only are the words false but that Townsend knows they are false and has said them "with the intention of damaging [his] personal and professional reputation."

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