Public donating to attorney costs in wrongful death suit

     A total of $72,768 has been donated as of Monday, April 23 for the legal defense of Ohio County resident Kystie Jaehnen.


     A total of $72,768 has been donated as of Monday, April 23 for the legal defense of Ohio County resident Kystie Jaehnen.

    Jaehnen, along with Indiana Conservation officer Michael (Chris) Powell and the Indiana Department of Natural Resources are named as defendants in a seven count document filed in Ohio County Circuit Court.

    Samantha Holland, sister of Justin Holland and head of his estate, is bringing suit along with Laura Holland and Eric Holland (Justin’s parents).

    Sergeant William Halbig with the Aurora Police Department has set up a GoFundMe page to raise money for Jaehnen,

   Halbig explained the situation.

   On February 20, 2017 a suspicious person prompted a call to 911 in Ohio County, Indiana. The suspicious person was parked in a elderly person’s yard for an extended period of time, blocking her driveway, and creating a road hazard. Shortly after a Police Officer arrived in response to the call. The man began resisting and both the officer and man went to the ground. A young woman (Kystie)standing nearby on her property ran to help the officer. Kystie could see the officer was losing the fight as this man reached for the officer’s gun. Kystie was armed and shot the man one time which ended the fight.

   Indiana State Police conducted the investigation, which was reviewed by the Dearborn-Ohio County Prosecutors Office, and the findings were that Kystie’s actions were deemed justified and no criminal charges were filed.

   The suit, filed by Attorney Thomas J Dall, contends Jaehnen used unjustified deadly force.

    Count one of  the suit  contends that Holland’s civil rights were violated by both Jaehnen and Powell.

    Count two alleges a conspiracy between the two.

    Both, along with the Department of Natural Resources, are part of the wrongful death claim in count three.

    In Count four, the Survival Act contends the Hollands are entitled to damages warranted had Justin Holland survived the altercation.

    Count five seeks compensation for battery.

     Count six names all three defendants with negligence.

     Count seven is against the DNR for negligent failure to train.

     They ask for damages including: compensatory and punitive damages; reasonable attorney fees; interest on all amounts recovered;  all injunctive relief; cost and expenses of the prosecution and any additional relief approved by the court.

    Powell is covered by his department as well as the FOP Legal Defense Fund.

    The goal is to raise $300,000 to pay for Jaehnen’s defense counsel. Her attorney is the firm of Guy A. Relford  of Carmel.

    On April 19, a motion by Jaehnen’s attorneys was granted by MagistrateKimberly A. Schmaltz granted an enlargement of time until June 4 to respond to the plaintiffs’ complaint for damages.