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Local man files $80M lawsuit against Wayne County following acquittal

  • / Updated:
  • Staff Report 

Richie Stokes Jr., a Clyde resident previously acquitted in a drive-by shooting case, has lodged a federal lawsuit against Wayne County, its sheriff’s office, several deputies, the Newark Police Department, and District Attorney Mike Calarco, among others. 

DiSanto Propane (Billboard)

The lawsuit was reported by The Finger Lakes Times and accuses those involved of false arrest, excessive use of force, and malicious prosecution relating to an incident on Jan. 17, 2021, where Stokes was alleged to have fired at a vehicle in Newark. 

Although no one was injured, the vehicle was reportedly hit by a bullet. After witnesses identified Stokes as the shooter, he was arrested, but a February county court trial found him not guilty of attempted assault and weapon possession.

This marks the third time Stokes has taken legal action against the county; previous lawsuits pertained to dismissed DWI charges. While a 2018 lawsuit was dismissed, another from 2021 is still ongoing. 

In his latest legal move, Stokes is seeking a jury trial or damages amounting to at least $80 million.