A Culpeper police captain says he was portrayed as corrupt and dishonest in news articles published by the Culpeper Star Exponent.
Christopher Settle has sued the paper and news reporter Allison Brophy Champion for defamation, demanding $1.35 million.
The Culpeper town manager placed Settle on administrative leave in 2012, but he was reinstated five months later after the town council fired the manager. Settle reportedly received a $100,000 settlement from the town.
In his suit against the newspaper, Settle said Champion’s articles “perpetuated rumors of criminality” and suggested that Settle lied during an investigation initiated by the manager.
Settle is represented by Charlottesville lawyer R. Lee Livingston.
A call for comment to the newspaper’s general manager was not immediately returned.
The newspaper is owned by BH Media Group Holdings, Inc., a Warren Buffett-controlled company which purchased the newspaper properties of Media General.
In an unrelated case, Culpeper County Commonwealth’s Attorney Megan Frederick is being sued by county Supervisor William Chase Jr. for alleged defamatory comments in a campaign email.