Federal suit alleges county conspiracy
He alleges they have a policy in place to protect deputies from disclosure of unfavorable information to defense attorneys and conspired in his case to protect Hoy after the deputy lied in court. He says Sanai later proceeded to lie in court himself to protect Hoy.
Timothy Wayne Forbes of Newberg says he was cited by Hoy in February 2011 for driving under the influence. Hoy lied under oath in the case, and county officials conspired to protect him from consequences, Forbes alleges.
The Oregon State Bar Association is now investigating complaints against Sanai and Videtich as well.
They were filed by Forbes' attorney in the original criminal case, John Hingson. In the federal action, Forbes is being represented by Montgomery Cobb.
Sanai, Berry and Videtich all declined comment. Hoy, who resigned in June 2011, could not be reached.
Crabtree said, "I was notified of this and I'm looking into it." But he said, "I see absolutely no merit whatsoever in terms of how it relates to the sheriff's office."
According to the lawsuit, Hoy conducted an Intoxilyzer test of Forbes at the time of the arrest. He later testified under oath, at a hearing before the state Division of Driver and Motor Vehicle Services, on the procedures he used in that testing.
“Hoy lied in his testimony about his methods of conducting the test to conceal defects in his testing procecdure,” the lawsuit alleges. “Defendant Hoy had been unaware that the Intoxilyzer test was recorded on video. … Hoy was discredited by the video recording.”
As a result, the DMV dismissed the attempt to suspend Forbes' license, it alleges.
Videtich proceeded to prosecute Forbes in Yamhill County Circuit Court. And the lawsuit alleges that Hoy “lied again under oath at the trial regarding the circumstances of the arrest.”
It goes on to say, “Hoy testified under oath that he could not observe (Forbes) driving at one location because there were cars parked along the street. In fact, however, the street was a no parking zone and no cars had been parked there.”
The lawsuit alleges Videtich and Hoy had conspired “to deceive the jury … by providing false testimony.”
During the proceedings, which resulted in a hung jury, Videtich “refused to produce the personnel file of Defendant Hoy” and “Sanai falsely testified under oath that the personnel file contained no discoverable evidence,” the suit alleges. However, it actually contained material that would have cast doubt on Hoy's credibility, it alleges, thus assisted the defense.
In his defense before the Oregon State Bar, Videtich denied refusing to produce the file. He said it was never requested from him.
He went on to say, "I had absolutely no knowledge of the contents of Deputy Hoy's file, and I had no reason to be suspicious of what those contents might include.
"Through the course of my employment to that point, I had gotten to know Deputy Hoy on a professional level and found him to be a straightforward, well-intentioned and honest individual. I do not recall ever hearing anything about him that ever caused me to give a second thought to his credibility and integrity."
However, according to the lawsuit, the defense eventually succeeded in getting a judge to review the file on its behalf. And it says he determined it did include material relevant to Hoy's credibility, thus "defendant Sanai's statement was inaccurate and inappropriate."
It also alleges that Sanai “admitted under oath that he had kept the personnel files of Yamhill County deputy sheriffs in his office solely to avoid” such legal demands for disclosure.
“It was the policy of defendant Yamhill County to deliberately keep the deputies' personnel files in county counsel's office instead of the sheriff's department,” the lawsuit alleges. “This policy was a subterfuge to avoid the county's legal obligation to produce personnel files which contained information discoverable under the Brady doctrine and other law.
"Defendants Berry, Sanai and Crabtree conspired to adopt this illegal policy in order to avoid the law. … Defendant Videtich conspired with defendants Berry, Sanai and Crabtree to maintain the policy during the prosecution of plaintiff."
It goes on to say, "If these government officials did not actively scheme to adopt the illegal policy, they conspired by looking the other way and avoided knowing what they should and must know and taking action they must take." It takes particular issue with "Sanai's conduct," terming it "intentional and accompanied by lies to the court.”
Eventually, the lawsuit notes, the defense succeeded in getting the case dismissed. However, it says Forbes incurred "approximately $30,000 in legal costs and fees" along the way, thus is entitled to damages.
In all, Forbes is seeking $250,000 in actual damages, along with $1 million in punitive damages and reimbursement of his attorney fees.