Disclosure owners lose nearly $1 mil to daughter in federal lawsuit

SOUTHERN ILLINOIS — An Illinois woman who accused her mother and stepfather of conspiring with local authorities to take away her child has been awarded a nearly $1 million judgment in U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Illinois.

According to federal court documents, a seven-person jury arrived at the verdict in favor of Jade Green Thursday evening.

Green’s mother, Angela Howser, and Howser’s husband, Jack Howser, were ordered to pay Green a total of $970,000.

The Howsers own the Disclosure, a southern Illinois newspaper that publishes on a periodic basis.

Thursday’s ruling was in addition to a settlement of $75,000 that was already reached with Lawrence County Sheriff Russell Adams and former Lawrence County State’s Attorney Chris Quick.

The verdict was a result of a series of meetings in 2014, which led to Green’s arrest in the middle of the night on a Saline County warrant.

Green’s daughter, a toddler at the time, was taken from her. Green sued on the grounds she felt her civil rights were violated.

Adams, the suit said, instructed his deputies to arrest Green on a theft warrant at 2 a.m. and, acting on advice of the state’s attorney, ordered that the custody of the minor child be taken and placed with Jack and Angela Howser, the suit said, adding that act is not a function of the state’s attorney.

Green’s attorney, Kent Heller, said Quick and Adams in June 2017 settled with Green for $75,000 total.

The judgment against the Howsers included $470,000 in compensatory damages and $500,000 in punitive damages.