Govt. officials listed in Nexus lawsuit respond in court motions

Published: Jun. 15, 2016 at 7:40 PM EDT
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Government officials listed in an ongoing lawsuit by Nexus Services, Inc. have responded in separate court motions. Note: Nexus advertises on WHSV.

Last week, attorneys for the commissioner of revenue for Augusta County, Jean Shrewsbury, filed a motion for sanctions. In it, she said her office began an investigation on the company at the beginning of 2016.

According to the motion, Nexus had, "not renewed their business licenses, even though the deadline had expired," as of March 7, 2016.

In response, Nexus provided business licenses, signed by Shrewsbury, to WHSV. Those were dated March 8, 2016.

Another issue raised in the original lawsuit mentioned by Shrewsbury was the use of an emoji depicting Adolf Hitler in emails by employees of her office.

"A plain reading of the email exchange clearly demonstrates that the emoji in question was not directed to or in reference to [Nexus] or any taxpayer," the motion read. "Instead it was directed, in jest, at a co-worker for being 'dictatorial' in her demands for a report regarding another taxpayer unrelated to [Nexus]."

The motion further reads that Nexus conducted, "a smear campaign in an effort to incite the public based on a false narrative of racial discrimination at her office."

In the original suit, Nexus accused the two employees of targeting two employees for their company.

In a separate motion, attorneys for Augusta County Sheriff Donald Smith and Deputy Sheriff Donald Moran discussed confidential documents accidentally delivered on a flash drive to Nexus via a Freedom of Information Act request.

"[Included were] intelligence reports for the Virginia State police fusion center, investigation reports from state and federal investigation agencies from ongoing and past investigations, social security numbers, dates of birth and other personally identifiable information for many individuals," the court document reads.

The motion asserts Nexus knew about the error and did not respond to a request to return it.

"As our litigation states, Nexus made disclosures to state and federal law enforcement," said a spokesperson for the company. "To add insult to injury, the defendants then asked to obstruct justice by destroying evidence of their dissemination and records."