A Missouri TV station is reporting that a Missouri state trooper who spoke out about the death of an Iowan is now suing supervisors in his own agency.
Twenty-year-old Brandon Ellingson of Clive, Iowa, died in the Lake of the Ozarks two years ago. Ellingson was into custody on suspicion of boating while intoxicated and handcuffed. He fell off the patrol’s boat, his life jacket came off and he drowned.
Trooper Randy Henry spoke with the trooper who arrested Ellingson. Henry later questioned how that trooper handled the situation. Henry also testified before a Missouri legislative committee that training for road troopers who were patrolling the lake was “very minimal.”
Henry says soon after his “whistleblower” actions, the agency demoted him. Henry’s suing three of his superiors in federal court, accusing them of unfair retaliation.
According to KQFX in Columbia, Missouri, Henry also charges the Missouri Highway Patrol was trying to discredit him as a witness in the Ellingson family’s wrongful death lawsuit. After his demotion, Henry also was re-assigned to patrol Truman Lake. It’s about 70 miles away from the Lake of the Ozarks where he’s worked for nearly three decades.