Ex-Simpson County chancery clerk sentenced

A former Simpson County chancery clerk was given two years probation Friday after pleading...
A former Simpson County chancery clerk was given two years probation Friday after pleading guilty earlier to a civil rights violation.(KTVF)
Published: Jun. 17, 2022 at 12:31 PM CDT
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JACKSON, Miss. (WDAM) - The former chancery clerk of Simpson County was sentenced to two years’ probation and given a $5,000 fine Friday for depriving a person of their civil rights.

Tommy Joe Harvey, 74, served as Simpson County chancery clerk from 2004 through May 31, 2022.

According to court documents, on April 28, 2017, “A.R.” was in court for a child custody-hearing. During the hearing, A.R. became upset and left the courtroom before the hearing was over.

A.R. was ordered back to the courtroom.

Tommy Joe Harvey overheard the disruption, and moments later, Harvey found A.R. in her vehicle, parked across the street.

Harvey told one of his employees to bring him a can of pepper spray from inside his office. Harvey told A.R. to compose herself and not drive away or she would be pepper sprayed.

Harvey pepper sprayed her while she was trying to drive away.

Harvey then told two Simpson County Sheriff’s Deputies to handcuff A.R.

After she was handcuffed, and while being escorted to the courthouse by the deputies, Harvey pepper sprayed A.R. several more times.

Harvey pled guilty on Feb. 23, 2022, to deprivation of civil rights under color of law.

The case was prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorney Jessica Terrill and Deputy Criminal Chief Erin Chalk.

Friday’s sentencing was announced by U.S. Attorney Darren J. LaMarca and Special Agent in Charge Jermicha Fomby of the Federal Bureau of Investigation, Jackson Field Office.

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