Lawyer files civil suit against Stanislaus County

local@modbee.comSeptember 6, 2013 

DN Sabatino 5

File photo of attorney Frank Carson. (Debbie Noda/The Modesto Bee)

DEBBIE NODA — Modesto Bee

— A Modesto lawyer who said he was attacked in a courthouse by a prosecution investigator three years ago has filed a civil rights lawsuit against Stanislaus County.

Steve Jacobson, a district attorney investigator, "went ballistic and lunged" at Frank Carson, a criminal defense attorney, when Carson attempted to take Jacobson's picture in February 2010, says the lawsuit, filed through a San Francisco lawyer.

Carson's camera went tumbling down a hallway, the document says, and the attorney "felt constrained in his movement and from further action without the permission of Jacobson under the penalty of imposition of further physical force or formal arrest."

Carson suffered "shock, humiliation and outrage," the lawsuit says, calling the alleged assault "oppressive and outrageous and not to be tolerated in a civilized society."

At the time, officials in the Sheriff's Department, which staffs courthouse security, said they investigated but did not believe a crime was committed.

In July 2010, Carson filed a $75,000 civil rights claim against Stanislaus County. Such claims often are precursors to lawsuits.

A court proceeding has been scheduled for Dec. 9.

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