NORTH PALM BEACH, Fla. - Local Toyota dealership owner Earl Stewart has filed a lawsuit against a North Palm Beach officer he claims has a personal vendetta.
North Palm Beach Police Officer Michael Abramczyk is the husband of a woman Stewart previously fired. After her termination, Stewart said he was reported to the state as a bad driver and his license was at risk.
Stewart thinks that Abramczyk filed the report.
A lawsuit claims that Stewart was given a speeding ticket by Abramczyk on or around August 18, 2011 -- a ticket the dealership owner didn't fight and paid.
Then on Sept. 26, 2011, he received a note from the state saying a report was made that questioned his driving ability.
"They accused me of something I was not guilty of," Stewart said. "I took the driver's test - the hearing and the eye test and everything - and passed 100 percent."
Afterwards, the Lake Park dealership owner said he questioned who filed the report.
"The police officer did what he did because I fired his wife," Stewart said. "He did it as a personal vendetta. He will not apologize."
The Village of North Palm Beach isn't commenting and, due to state law, isn't confirming the officer reported the information to the state.
"If you have nothing to hide then you'll say no I didn't do it, but he can't say that so he's hiding behind the law," Stewart said.
The lawsuit fights a 36-year-old law that says any person, physician or agency can file a report against a licensed driver saying that they aren't fit to drive and that person's identity remains confidential.
"The report that's made is not admissible in court so I don't know where (Stewart and his lawyers) could go with that," said attorney Michael O'Rourke, who is unrelated to the lawsuit.
Stewart said changing that law is really what his lawsuit is about.
"It presents a legal question as to whether it should be disclosed or not whether the police have gone beyond their power," O'Rourke said.
In this case, Stewart thinks Abramczyk did go beyond his power.
"They're indemnifying them against criminal and civil liability. That's the reason the law needs to be changed," Stewart added.
Stewart said he simply wants an apology and that any money he gets from the lawsuit, if he does, he will donate to a charity.