Man shot during search sues deputy, City of Chattanooga, and Hamilton County

Man shot during search sues deputy, City of Chattanooga, and Hamilton County

January 12th, 2012 by Todd South in News

Cecil Earl Vance

Photo by Contributed Photo/Times Free Press.

A 22-year-old Chattanooga man shot in the leg by a Hamilton County sheriff's deputy during a residence search in 2010 has filed a lawsuit seeking $250,000 for his injury.

Deputy Mike Thompson shot Cecil Earl Vance in the left calf as the deputy tripped and fell with his gun while searching Vance's 7301 East Brainerd Road apartment on Dec. 30, 2010.

Police arrested Vance on drug charges after he was released from the hospital a month later. Vance pleaded guilty to manufacturing marijuana in May 2011 and was sentenced to two years probation.

Local attorneys Mark Warren and Zachary England Vance filed the suit Jan. 4 in Hamilton County Circuit Court, naming Chattanooga, Hamilton County and Thompson as defendants.

A late phone call Wednesday to their law office was not returned.

"Cecil Vance incurred direct trauma to his lower extremity, experienced severe pain and blood loss and went into shock," according to court documents.

"[Vance's] injuries are permanent so that he will require future medical care, suffer a permanent impairment of his earning capacity and will remain unable to pursue his normal activities," according to court documents.

Sheriff's Department spokeswoman Janice Atkinson said that neither she nor the attorneys could comment on pending lawsuits.

At the time of the incident, Hamilton County Sheriff Jim Hammond told the Times Free Press that Thompson was removed from duty but was soon brought back to work.

Thompson did not face any disciplinary action or additional training following the accidental shooting, Hammond said.

"Nothing indicates this was done on purpose," Hammond said at the time. "Thank God no one was critically injured. I'm sure we'll hear from attorneys on this."