Sheriff vs. firefighter crash scene fight lawsuit settled in Chester County, SC

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Previous coverage of this story

You may recall the video above and the story behind it from 2014. It occurred in Chester County, South Carolina on Valentine’s Day. There was no love that day between firefighters and police on the scene of a truck crash.

West Chester Volunteer Fire Department Chief Andy Martin and his firefighter brother Tommy were arrested after fighting with Chester County Sheriff Alex Underwood and his deputies over a road closure. The firefighting brothers were arrested at their homes a day later.

The Martins were never prosecuted, though the South Carolina Attorney General’s office told reporters probable cause for the arrests “may have existed.” That didn’t satisfy Andy and Tommy Martin who filed suit against the sheriff. Now it’s being reported that lawsuit has been settled just before it was to go to trial.

The Charlotte Observer:

The lawsuit filed by two Chester County firefighters alleging false arrest and assault against the sheriff and top deputies was settled Monday, a week before a potential trial.

Terms of the settlement have not been released.

Chester County and its elected officials have insurance coverage for lawsuits that allege damage from personal harm, said Joanie Winters, Chester County attorney. The settlement costs will be paid by the insurance company that settled the claim, Winters said.

Chester County does not pay the settlement, Winters said, the insurance company does. However, the money for the insurance coverage is purchased by Chester County and paid for by taxpayers.

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