‘Implausible’ Gold Bar lawsuit gets tossed

SEATTLE — A federal judge has thrown out a lawsuit brought by a Gold Bar woman who alleged people working for local governments in Snohomish County have for years conspired to violate her rights.

Anne Block brought the lawsuit in 2014, naming as defendants the county, Gold Bar and more than a dozen current or former government officials.

In a 19-page ruling filed July 8, U.S. District Judge Richard A. Jones characterized Block’s assertions as “implausible,” “incomprehensible,” or involving activities that she may not appreciate, but aren’t violations of federal law.

When she first filed the lawsuit, Block alleged that she’d become the target of various misdeeds by Gold Bar and county officials after making a series of records requests and writing numerous blog posts. Much of her activities focused on the public and personal life of a former Gold Bar mayor and, later, that woman’s husband, John Pennington, who heads up the county’s Department of Emergency Management.

The Penningtons eventually brought a complaint against Block, who is an attorney. The Washington State Bar Association suspended her law license as part of an ongoing disciplinary investigation. In response, Block attempted to expand her federal lawsuit to include the bar association and its disciplinary officials.

The judge refused to allow Block to take that step. He put the case on hold months ago, and told Block that she must address several deficiencies in her complaint. For example, he wanted Block to present details to support claims against a former aide to Aaron Reardon, who records show engaged in shadowy online harassment of Block and others he considered the former county executive’s enemies.

Instead, Block opted to submit paperwork asserting that she is the focus of racketeering by people in government and the legal establishment.

“The court concludes that Ms. Block will not state claims even if given another opportunity to amend the complaint and the court therefore declines to grant her another opportunity,” Jones wrote.

Block already has challenged the decision in the 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals. Because she took that step, county prosecutors say it is premature to seek recovery of public funds spent on the case. In February, Block launched a failed attempt to recall Prosecuting Attorney Mark Roe, alleging he’d engaged in misfeasance for how he responded to her federal lawsuit.

Scott North: 425-339-3431; north@heraldnet.com. Twitter: @snorthnews

More in Local News

Separate suspected DUI, hit-and-run crashes hospitalize 4

Emergency responders were busy Saturday night after three collisions across Lynnwood.

A new $20 shuttle begins runs from Monroe to Stevens Pass

Overcrowded parking in the ski area and heavy traffic on U.S. 2 prompted the new weekend service.

Marysville Little League president sentenced for theft

A forensic audit found Leo Carlos, 50, could not account for more than $71,000 of league money.

Looking back: 1930s WPA project transformed Forest Park

A public works program is responsible for much of what exists today.

County seeks federal aid after recent floods and landslides

If your home or business was damaged, you could help the state qualify for disaster assistance.

A resident uses an ATV to navigate the washed out and crumbling road bed of 260th Ave NE leading to Skyview Estate in Monroe on February 13, 2020. (Kevin Clark / The Herald)
Neighborhood near Monroe still scrambling after mudslide

Inspectors found new cracks in the road Thursday. The county says one home may be unsafe to occupy.

Dental records confirm identity of remains found in Tulalip

Jacob Hilkin, 24, of Everett, had been missing since 2018.

photos by Dan Bates / The Herald 
                                WSDOT spokeswoman Diane Rhodes talks with reporters and photojournalists at the passenger terminal under construction at Mukilteo on Thursday.
Passenger building offers glimpse of Mukilteo ferry terminal

The new facility connecting Mukilteo and Whidbey Island is expected to open in October or November.

Everett’s new passenger terminal gets some national love

Paine Field was voted 8th-best among a selection of small airports, some of which aren’t all that small.

Most Read