MIDDLETON -- A Middleton couple has filed a $500,000 tort claim against the city, accusing officers with the Middleton Police Department of misconduct.
The tort, which was filed by the couple's lawyer July 6, charges that Sgt. Steve Walker and Officer Robert Kightlinger engaged in "unethical, predatory, criminal and/or exploitative behavior."
Both Walker and Kightlinger resigned from the department Monday. Both men had been placed on administrative leave in May.
According to the tort claim, the harassment began in January 2016, after the husband was arrested on charges of domestic battery and disturbing the peace. The man pleaded guilty in May to a reduced charge of battery and disturbing the peace.
Middleton Mayor Darin Taylor said neither Walker nor Kightlinger responded to the domestic violence call, and Idaho State Police's investigation into the officers instead centered on whether they misused information in their possession.
According to Taylor, the officers' actions were determined to be inconsistent with city policy.
But the Owyhee County Prosecutor's Office said Monday Walker and Kightlinger would not be charged criminally, and that complaints that the officers had violated the law were unfounded.
Matthew Williams, the Meridian-based lawyer representing the couple, disagreed.
The tort accuses officers with the Middleton Police Department of "harassment, stalking, negligent infliction of emotional distress, intentional infliction of emotional distress, destruction of evidence, computer crime, intimidation of a witness, unlawful imprisonment, malicious prosecution, falsifying evidence, bribing a witness, using public position for personal gain, wiretapping and criminal conspiracy."
The tort also alleges Middleton failed to adequately train and supervise the officers.
The tort claim obtained by KTVB is heavily redacted, and the specifics of the alleged misconduct is unclear.
The couple's lawyer said one of the officers came to the wife's home in uniform and "under the pretense of official business" while her husband was in jail, and asked her to show him her husband's guns.
"The officer attempted to convince [the woman] to [redacted,] while trying to persuade her that her husband's background precluded him from owning or possessing firearms," the couple's lawyer wrote in the tort.
The next several paragraphs have been removed from the document.
Middleton, which was formerly patrolled by the Canyon County Sheriff's Office, formed a police department in 2014. The resignations of Walker and Kightlinger bring the total number of officers in the department from five to three.
The mayor says Middleton will hire new officers to replace the two men.