A third employee of a weekly newspaper in Kansas has joined a federal suit against a local police department over an illegal raid conducted at the newspaper’s office and the publisher’s and the vice mayor’s homes, according to The Associated Press. Cheri Bentz, who was the office manager at the Marion County Record, claims she was illegally detained and questioned, and that her cellphone was taken from her as well.

The case set off a First Amendment fury last summer after a home security camera captured the paper’s 98-year-old co-owner, Joan Meyer, berating the officers who had invaded the home she shared with her son, publisher Eric Meyer. Joan Meyer collapsed and died the next day following a sleepless, stress-filled night.

The raid led to the resignation of Police Chief Gideon Cody, who initially defended the action. Despite the official line that the raid was linked to a convoluted situation involving private driving records, it turned out that the Record was investigating possible wrongdoing by Cody at his previous job.

Earlier coverage.

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