Scruggs continues fight against being questioned (01/04/08)
On Dec. 27, trial attorney Richard “Dickie” Scruggs renewed his battle to avoid being questioned by State Farm attorneys in a lawsuit he filed on behalf of Thomas and Pamela McIntosh of Biloxi, against State Farm Fire and Casualty Co. Scruggs asked another judge to overturn Federal Magistrate Robert Walker’s ruling that Scruggs should face questioning.
Earlier in December, Mississippi federal judge Robert H. Walker ruled Scruggs and his son and law partner, Zach, can be questioned under oath in the McIntosh suit.
The McIntosh suit accuses Forensics Analysis & Engineering Co, a firm working for State Farm, of producing conflicting reports on the cause of storm damage to the couple's home. According to court records, the reports were given to Scruggs in February 2006 by employees of E.A. Renfroe, an independent adjusting firm (the Associated Press article, linked below, incorrectly identifies E.A. Renfroe as an engineering firm). Earlier this year, U.S. District Judge William Acker in Alabama ruled that Scruggs willfully defied a court order to return confidential documents stolen from State Farm, which Scruggs gave to Mississippi Attorney General Jim Hood rather than comply with Acker’s order. Acker referred Scruggs for prosecution for criminal contempt, a matter which is still pending.
The order is unusual because Scruggs was an attorney for the plaintiffs in the McIntosh case. Scruggs has since withdrawn from that case.