NASHVILLE, Tenn. (WVLT/WTVF) -- A Tennessee couple won a $115,000 verdict against two agents with the Tennessee Bureau of Investigation who were accused of illegally barging into their home without a search warrant.
After a three-day trial, a Lake County jury ordered TBI special agents Mark Reynolds and Jeff Jackson to pay $100,000 in compensatory damages and $15,000 in punitive damages to Fred and Marilyn Wortman, according to the couple's lawyer.
The lawyer said the verdict should send a message to the TBI and other law enforcement officers, WTVF reported.
Reynolds and Jackson reportedly came into the couple's home after their son, who was already in jail for attempting to have his wife killed, told another inmate about sports collectibles in the home. The couple's son said he might be able to use the valuables to pay someone to carry out the murder of his wife.
The TBI agents said they wanted to seize the valuables from the Wortman's home, even though they knew the couple was not involved.
TBI officials said they did not try to get a search warrant "due to the complexity of the search warrant."
Reynolds and Jackson reportedly told the Wortmans what they were looking for and argued that they were justified in barging into the home to secure the items out of fear the evidence might be removed.
Copyright 2020 WVLT via WTVF. All rights reserved.