Paddling Lawsuit

New paddling lawsuit filed against police officer

A new lawsuit has been filed against a veteran police officer accused of letting the paddling of a teenager go too far. James Martin was suspended last month after a lawsuit accused him of improperly paddling a 16-year-old as part of a crime diversion program. Martin is a part-time police chief of Fowler Township and a full-time police officer in nearby Howland Township. Martin has not been charged with anything. A grand jury in Trumbull County has been meeting this week and hearing evidence in the matter. Yesterday, 18-year-old Robert McCrystal filed a lawsuit against Martin and officials from Howland and Fowler townships. McCrystal's mother says her son was paddled by Martin to avoid two years in jail and a fine after he got into a fight at school. The suit alleges McCrystal's civil rights were violated as was his right to privacy since the paddling sessions were recorded.