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Eye On Boise

Former Idaho inmate, paralegal file $50M lawsuit

Here’s a news item from the Associated Press: NAMPA, Idaho (AP) — A former Idaho inmate and his girlfriend have filed a federal lawsuit against the Idaho Department of Corrections, seeking $50 million in damages because they claim correction staffers retaliated against them. According to the Idaho Press-Tribune (, a newspaper in Nampa, Renee McKenzie and Lance Wood filed the complaint last month. The case arose after McKenzie, a paralegal and the former wife of Republican Sen. Curt McKenzie, was appointed by a federal court to help Wood in a separate lawsuit against the state. After the pair began a romantic relationship, the judge pulled McKenzie from Wood's case. The couple claims correction staffers wrongly harassed them and barred them from meeting because of their efforts in the other lawsuit. A department spokesman declined to comment. Wood is serving a life sentence for his role in the 1988 kidnapping and torture slaying of a gay man in Utah. He is currently held in an Oregon prison.

Betsy Z. Russell
Betsy Z. Russell joined The Spokesman-Review in 1991. She currently is a reporter in the Boise Bureau covering Idaho state government and politics, and other news from Idaho's state capital.

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