Men sue Beaufort County deputies after acquittal

BEAUFORT, S.C. (AP) - The Beaufort County Sheriff's Office is asking a judge to dismiss a lawsuit filed by two men who were acquitted of burglary and assault with intent to kill charges.

The Beaufort Gazette reports that Harry Battle Jr. and Theophilus Hamilton sued the agency in October, asking for unspecified damages for malicious prosecution, false imprisonment and abuse of process.

The men say deputies weren't concerned about the truth, only getting someone arrested. They say an investigator filed a false incident report and intimidated a witness by threatening his family and describing a prison rape and Sheriff P.J. Tanner defamed them by continuing to infer they were guilty after they were acquitted.

The sheriff's office denies the claims last week, saying the statute of limitations has run out on many of them.

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