Case Resolved Against Former Barren County Sheriff

Mar 26, 2014

A federal lawsuit against former Barren County Sheriff Chris Eaton and three of his deputies has been settled.  The case was unrelated to a civil rights lawsuit against Eaton that went to trial last year. 

Mark Smith filed the complaint in 2012 against then-Barren County Sheriff Chris Eaton stemming from his arrest in 2011.  Also named as defendants were deputies Chris Wyatt, Rodney Sponhouse, and Aaron Bennett. 

An agreement was reached Tuesday, two weeks before a trial was to begin in U.S. District Court in Bowling Green.  Terms of the settlement were not disclosed. 

Smith’s excessive force lawsuit was separate from a case that went to trial last year against Eaton and two other law enforcement officers. They were acquitted of using excessive force on another suspect, but Eaton was convicted of witness tampering after deputies testified he encouraged them to put false reports.  The former sheriff is appealing that conviction.