Judge orders town, ex-police chief to pay $40K in legal fees
BATON ROUGE - A federal judge has awarded nearly $40,000 in fees to attorneys for a woman who accused a former Louisiana police chief of sexually assaulting her in his office while she was drunk and he was on duty.
The woman's lawyers sought nearly $90,000 in fees, but U.S. District Judge Shelly Dick ruled Thursday that $39,899 is reasonable compensation. Dick found evidence of overbilling and duplicative billing in records submitted by plaintiffs' attorneys.
Dick awarded $50,000 in damages to the woman in August after ruling that the town of Sorrento and its former police chief, Earl Theriot, are liable for violating her constitutional rights.
The woman testified Theriot forced her to perform sexual acts in his office. Theriot's attorneys claimed she initiated the encounter to avoid jail.