Grant County Named In Lawsuit Over Game Of 'Doctor'

Lawsuit Claims Case Should Have Been Handled By Children's Parents

Published On: Nov 28 2011 04:31:36 AM CST   Updated On: Nov 28 2011 07:05:14 AM CST

Grant County and the Grant County Department of Social Services have been added as defendants in a pending lawsuit against the county?s district attorney and two others.

The suit alleges that District Attorney Lisa Riniker went too far in prosecuting a 6-year-old boy for first-degree sexual assault after he allegedly played ?doctor? with two 5-year-old children -- one boy and one girl -- last fall. Jan Moravits, a social services investigator, and James Kopp, a now-retired sheriff?s investigator, were also named in the original suit.

The amended complaint filed late Sunday night also claims Riniker retaliated against the 6-year-old plaintiff?s parents when she sought a gag order in state court last week to prevent a scheduled interview with WISC-TV from taking place. The document goes on to say that Riniker believed the gag order would prohibit the plaintiffs from speaking with their attorneys for the federal suit, or proceed with the federal court case.

The plaintiffs? full names aren't being used to protect the identity of their minor child and the alleged victims.

Illinois attorneys Christopher Cooper and David Sigale represent the 6-year-old and his parents and said that Grant County?s Social Services Departmant ?maintains customs, policies, and practices that caused harm to Plaintiff ?D??. ?D? is used in place of the young boy?s name.

The suit claims that a game between three children should have been handled between parents -- not the law, adding that in spite of ?D?s? claim that he was touched wrongly by the 5-year-old, that child faced no charges because he was the son of a prominent Grant County official.

Fred Naatz, director of Grant County's Social Services Department, has not responded to requests for comment.