Court agrees: Trooper should get job back
Posted November 23, 2010 11:10 a.m. EST
Updated November 23, 2010 11:39 a.m. EST
RALEIGH, N.C. — A Superior Court judge ruled Monday that Trooper Charles Jones, who was dismissed from the North Carolina Highway Patrol in September 2007, should be reinstated with back pay and be reimbursed for his attorneys' fees.
Jones was fired after another trooper turned over two 15-second video clips of Jones suspending his K-9 partner, Ricoh, from a railing and kicking him repeatedly to force him to release a chew toy.
Patrol leaders said they initially planned to discipline Jones but decided to fire him when then-Gov. Easley's office intervened.
In 2008, the State Personnel Commission found his punishment too harsh and ordered that he be reinstated. Two years later, Jones remains off the force.
Judge James E. Hardin agreed that the personnel commission overstepped its bounds and concurred with a previous ruling that he be reinstated with back pay.
The Highway Patrol can appeal to the North Carolina State Court of Appeals.