Ravalli Treasurer Files $10 Million Libel Suit Against Auditor - ABC FOX MONTANA NEWS, WEATHER, SPORTS - KTMF/KWYB

Ravalli Treasurer Files $10 Million Libel Suit Against Auditor

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HAMILTON -

On the day of a hearing that would determine is she broke Montana law, Ravalli County Treasurer Valerie Stamey files a lawsuit alleging libel against the independent firm performing an audit of her office.

In the complaint, Stamey's lawyers accuse attorneys of the firm Anderson Zurmuehlen of releasing a false statement in writing that, "It is apparent the duties of the Ravalli County Treasurer were not properly executed."

Court documents go on to say this particular statement subjected Stamey to "hatred, contempt, ridicule, obloquy... caused her to be shunned and avoided... and injures [her] in her workplace."

The total amount Stamey's lawyer is seeking for this alleged libelous statement? $10 million in punitive damages.

Ravalli County Commissioners placed Stamey on paid administrative leave while Anderson Zurmuehlen investigates allegations that Stamey did not file hundreds of thousands of dollars on time.

The Treasurer's Office faces a $500,000 fine for the late filings.

This afternoon county commissioners gave Stamey a chance to defend herself in a hearing before deciding if she broke Montana law and if they should file a lawsuit against her seeking the penalty.

However, Stamey's attorney, Robert Myers, said she would not be attending the hearing, as she is "exhausted".

 

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