Mark Niesse, AJC: A jury has reached a $150,500 verdict against DeKalb County Commissioner Stan Watson resulting from a barroom argument in which he falsely accused two women of stealing his wallet.
The women alleged that Watson slandered them, and the dispute led to one of the women being handcuffed for about an hour before police released her.
Watson later found his wallet in his car, and he apologized to his constituents for the incident.
Watson declined to comment about the case Thursday, and his attorney didn’t immediately return a phone call.
The lawsuit arose from a late-night dispute at Tanqueray Lounge on July 12, 2012.
A police report said Watson appeared intoxicated as he complained that someone had stolen his wallet while he was seated at the bar.
The plaintiffs in the case, Sheneeka Bradsher and Zarinah Ali, said Watson yelled at them as he accused them of taking his wallet, which contained about $200.
As Bradsher loudly denied Watson’s claims, police arrested her for disorderly conduct, according to the police report. Police said in the report they released Bradsher because they didn’t feel that arresting her was justified without also arresting Watson.
Ali also alleged that Watson poked her in the forehead.
“My client wanted vindication and resolution,” said attorney Maurice Bernard, speaking for Bradsher. “She is relieved that it is pretty much over.”