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Wed Mar 29, 2017, 10:56 PM

State Investigator Who Spied on Civil Rights Director Sues Oregon AG, Saying He Was Following Orders

The state investigator fired for spying on the Twitter account of Oregon's top civil rights lawyer sued his former bosses Tuesday, claiming his snooping was officially sanctioned and his termination was unjustified.

Oregon Attorney General Ellen Rosenblum fired investigator James R. Williams in August, almost a year after he reported to his bosses that Erious Johnson Jr., director of civil rights for the Oregon Department of Justice, used the Black Lives Matter hashtag and tweeted about the rap group Public Enemy.

Williams was spying on the state's top civil rights lawyer, who was also his own colleague.

The matter became public Nov. 10, when the Urban League of Portland, the American Civil Liberties Union of Oregon and other groups wrote to Rosenblum asking for an investigation into the matter. Urban League of Portland CEO Nkenge Harmon Johnson is married to Erious Johnson.

At the time, Rosenblum called Williams' investigation of Johnson "an act of profiling."

Read more: http://www.wweek.com/news/courts/2017/03/28/state-investigator-who-surveilled-civil-rights-director-sues-oregon-attorney-general-saying-he-was-following-orders/

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