Nevada mayor sues private investigator after finding GPS tracking device on vehicle
Reno mayor Hillary Schieve is suing a private investigator and his company after finding a real-time GPS tracking device attached to her vehicle.
The lawsuit, which was first reported on Thursday by The Nevada Independent and was filed in Washoe County's Second Judicial Court, alleges that the investigator had trespassed onto her property in order to install the device without her consent.
The Nevadan, according to the complaint, was not aware until a mechanic noticed it while working on her vehicle.
Furthermore, the investigator had been working on behalf of an 'unidentified third party' whose identity the mayor has not been able to ascertain, according to the suit.
'The tracking and surveillance of Schieve caused her, as it would cause any reasonable person, significant fear and distress,' according to the complaint.
Schieve, who filed the lawsuit as a private citizen, shared an image of the device with the paper.
She is seeking restitution for invasion of privacy, trespassing, civil conspiracy and negligence, as well as attorney’s costs.
She also is seeking to find out who hired the investigator.
Fox News' requests for comment from David McNeely, the investigator alleged to have placed the tracking device, and his company 5 Alpha Industries were not immediately returned.
Schieve told the Nevada Independent that police in Sparks were able to determine that the device had been purchased by McNeely, which she found just weeks before her reelection.
'I am publicly announcing this now, and did not make any public statements at the time when it was discovered, to make clear that this is about one thing, and one thing only: it is not ok to stalk people,' Schieve told The Associated Press.
A spokesperson for the mayor told the AP that Schieve had gone to the Sparks police department rather than Reno police in order to 'keep clear of any conflict-of-interest questions.'
The complaint also alleges, without offering additional evidence, that 5 Alpha industries had 'installed similar tracking devices on other vehicles of multiple other prominent community members.'
In a statement provided to The Nevada Independent, lead attorney Adam Hosmer-Henner of McDonald Carano said the complaint is based on an 'outrageous' invasion of privacy.
'We will aggressively seek to determine who hired the private investigators and will be amending our complaint to assert claims against them as well,' Hosmer-Henner said. 'Further, we have been informed that the tracking and surveillance was not limited to Ms. Schieve and so potentially affected community members should inspect their vehicles and property for similar devices.'
The Associated Press contributed to this report.
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