Kane County Chronicle: Deputy sues, says firing was political

Kane County Chronicle coverage of Delaney Law case, Yahnke vs. County of Kane.

From the Kane County Chronicle:

Deputy sues, says firing was political

A former sheriff’s deputy has filed a federal lawsuit against Kane County Sheriff Pat Perez, claiming he was fired because Perez feared he would oppose him in an election for sheriff.

Former deputy Steven Yahnke wants his job back and more than $1 million in damages. Yahnke’s suit alleges that his firing in October 2008 was politically motivated and in violation of his First Amendment right of free speech.

Perez said Yahnke’s claims have no merit.

“I terminated him for cause in 2008 and did everything in accordance with the collective bargaining agreement,” Perez said.

Perez also has said he would not seek re-election, but Yahnke said the sheriff could change his mind at any time and run again.

Yahnke said he originally filed his lawsuit in Kane County, but once a deposition uncovered evidence of political motivation, the case was dropped and refiled recently in federal court.

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