Horry Co. Police calls former officer's lawsuit 'frivolous'

A former Horry County police officer's lawsuit against his former employers is moving into federal court.

Meantime, the police department has filed a counterclaim saying the suit is "frivolous."

Charles McLendon, formerly of Myrtle Beach and now living in Florence, originally sued in Circuit Court saying claiming he lost his job in retaliation for trying to report racist comments that were being made in the department's Southern sector where he worked.

McLendon initially filed a breach of contract suit on Oct. 24.

The suit lists several defendants, including Horry County Police, the Horry County Sheriff's Office, Sheriff Phillip Thompson, Police Chief Saundra Rhodes, several county police officers, and his estranged wife, Kristen Dawn McLendon, according to court documents.

A notice of removal transferring the case from the circuit court to federal court was filed Dec. 5.

On the following day, county police and associated defendants filed a reply and counterclaim denying all allegations seeking legal costs and other costs awarded by the court.

"Defendants assert this suit is frivolous and without merit," the Dec. 6 response says.

Horry County police also says McLendon's lawsuit should be dismissed because the suit fails to state a claim upon which relief could be granted, because one or more defendants weren't properly served and because the defendants are "state agents" that are immune from suit.