Fargo, ND (KFGO-KEYZ) – Cass County Sheriff Paul Laney is one of four people being sued by a New York woman in a multi-million dollar civil rights lawsuit in connection with the Dakota Access Pipeline Protest.
Sophia Wilansky was seriously injured in an explosion that protesters say was caused by police. In a lawsuit filed in U.S. District Court, Wilansky claims that police launched an explosive which nearly severed her hand.
Court documents claim law enforcement attempted to conceal their actions by defaming Wilansky and by claiming she caused the injury while attempting to use an improvised explosive device. Police have said the injury was caused by a propane canister that was rigged to explode by protesters.
Wilansky is suing Laney, Morton County Sheriff Kyle Kirchmeier, North Dakota Highway Patrol Captain Tom Iverson and an unnamed law enforcement officer for allegedly violating her constitutional rights, assault, defamation, and emotional distress.
The complaint says Wilansky is seeking “millions of dollars” in damages to be determined at trial.