Can I sue a police department for harassment, slander, and defamation of character?
Asked May 29, 2009, 04:50 PM
I own a local tattoo shop.
We've been experiencing a tremendous decrease in business due to allegations and rumors that drugs are sold out of our studio.
All allegations are false, and we have written and signed statements from a number of customers and other people of what officers in our too-small town have been saying.
Allegations include: "we found a bong and a pipe in the back of the shop", said an officer to a civilian-friend. We weren't even contacted to sort out the "evidence found behind our shop."
"their building smells like weed"
None of my employees are permitted to use drugs or alcohol, we have a monthly urine testing for each employee that covers drug usage (1 emp. Is on probation) and bbps. (blood borne pathogens)
The local marshal's office has been telling non-officers (aka civilians and potential customers) to "stay away from that shop, we've been watching them, we have our eye on them."
All of the above have witnesses and signed legal statements.
So pretty much, our marshal's office has been making slanderous remarks and harassing our shop.
Can I sue for defamation of character, slander and harassment against a marshal's office?
I live in a town too small for its own good, where everone knows everyone's problems, in Arizona.