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Woman sues Hubbard County, Akeley, former deputy in assault case

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news Park Rapids, 56470
Park Rapids Minnesota PO Box 111 56470

The woman who claimed she was sexually assaulted by a former Hubbard County deputy last summer has filed a $2 million civil rights lawsuit against the county and the city of Akeley.

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Kristy Barsch, a rural Akeley mother of two, names former Hubbard County Deputy Greg Siera, Akeley Police Chief Eric Klein and Akeley reserve officer Travis Carlson, alleging "conscious-shocking conduct" in the alleged assault and investigation, which resulted in no criminal charges being filed against Siera.

Siera resigned from the county three months ago. Barsch, in her suit, is demanding money damages and "changes in the policies and procedures" of both agencies named.

Both Hubbard County Attorney Don Dearstyne and county Coordinator Jack Paul declined comment. Paul said the county was seeking an attorney to represent it.

Barsch alleges that after she sought help in a domestic situation in June of 2008 involving the father of her children, Siera began stopping by while on duty and engaging in inappropriate contact that eventually resulted in a rape Aug. 13, 2008.

She named Klein and Carlson for failing to stop the conduct, and alleges Klein even molested her on one occasion. At the time of the alleged rape, Barsch was living in a home Carlson owned, the complaint states.

"I can't really comment," Klein said. "All I can say is they're false allegations. I spoke to my attorney today and he said we're very confident we will prevail."

To read more on the lawsuit, pick up a copy of Wednesday's Park Rapids Enterprise.

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