Seattle mayor’s lawyers seek sanctions against accuser’s attorney in sex abuse suit
SEATTLE (AP) — Lawyers defending the mayor of Seattle in a sexual abuse lawsuit filed a motion Tuesday seeking sanctions against the attorney representing the mayor’s accuser for allegedly violating professional standards.
Mayor Ed Murray’s attorney Malaika M. Eaton contends opposing counsel Lincoln Beauregard has been “wrongly filing documents for an improper use” since filing a lawsuit against Murray on behalf of his client, Delvonn Heckard, The Seattle Times reported (https://goo.gl/jtvGNE ).
“Since the initiation of this lawsuit, Mr. Beauregard has repeatedly wrongly filed correspondence with counsel and discovery papers with the Court in violation of the Civil Rules for an improper purpose,” Eaton wrote in the motion. “Defendant’s counsel has tried to avoid this motion by asking Mr. Beauregard to stop, and warning him that counsel would be forced to take appropriate action if he did not.”
Beauregard called the motion for sanctions “ridiculous” in a phone interview with the newspaper Tuesday and said “there’s nothing at all illegal or improper with us filing documents with the court.”
The motion was lodged after Beauregard on Monday filed a subpoena suggesting Seattle Police Chief Kathleen O’Toole and one of Murray’s staff members are “involved in cover-up efforts” regarding the police response to a “suspicious person” report at the mayor’s home June 24.
A Murray spokesman called the subpoena “outlandish” and unrelated to the lawsuit, which Murray says is politically motivated. The mayor also released a statement from five people who said they were guests at Murray’s home June 24. They contradicted an anonymous allegation in the subpoena that claimed the police call was in response to a “shirtless man” who’d left belongings inside the mayor’s house.
Heckard, 46, sued Murray earlier this month. The Kent man said the mayor “raped and molested him” over several years beginning in 1986 when Heckard was a 15-year-old crack cocaine addict and Murray was in his 30s.
Two other men, Jeff Simpson and Lloyd Anderson, also have separately told multiple news outlets that they met Murray while living in a center for troubled teens and that he paid them for sex in the 1980s. Both have said they don’t know Heckard and are not part of his lawsuit.
Murray has strenuously denied the claims by all three men.
Both sides in the suit have provided information to the media almost daily since the lawsuit was filed.
In the sanctions matter, Murray’s lawyers are asking the court to issue a monetary fine against Beauregard to be determined by a judge. The court has set a hearing for May 3.