NEDERLAND, Texas (KAMR/KCIT) – According to a Friday afternoon statement released by Klein Investigations and Consulting, the family of Thomas Brown, a teenager from Canadian, Texas who went missing in 2016 and whose remains were found in 2019, intend to file a defamation lawsuit against multiple North Texas people and companies next week.
The listed plaintiffs in the announcement, Chris Meek, Penny Meek, and Tucker Brown, were noted as Brown’s stepfather, mother, and brother. Klein stated that since the discovery of Brown’s body in January 2019, “a small group of citizens and members of the media have promoted a narrative” that the family members were responsible for “covering up a suicide, concealing a death, dumping Tom’s body off Lake Marvin Road, and then hiring a private investigator to cover up a crime.”
The announcement also posed that the family members were accused by the listed defendants “of a conspiracy to mislead law enforcement” in Brown’s case, and have spread the allegations denied by the family members to the public via the radio and social media.
Alongside the plaintiffs, the announcement also noted that the defendants in the suit are expected to include:
- Chris Samples Broadcasting, Inc.
- Chris Samples, individually
- Michael Crain, individually
- USA Investigations – Lubbock Texas
- Anita Webb, individually
- Amanda Lehman (s/n Moore)
- Canadian Record, Inc.
- Laurie Brown, individually and as Editor of The Canadian Record
- Michelle Gomez, individually
As published in the High Plains Observer – Perryton, Michael Crain and Chris Samples have discussed the case of Thomas Brown in a related podcast series, with Crain listed as a private investigator affiliated with USA Investigations in Lubbock on the company’s website. Canadian Record, Inc. and editor Laurie Brown are related to the area newspaper, which has published multiple articles related to the case.
Klein’s announcement said that the family members connected with the law firm Kilgore and Kilgore PLLC, as well as attorney John Morgan of Dallas, and will be filing the suit in Hemphill County on Wednesday.
Since 2016, Thomas Brown’s disappearance and subsequent cold case was the subject of a joint investigation with state and federal officials, the creation of the Texas Attorney General’s Cold Case and Missing Persons Unit, at least one podcast, and ongoing updates from private investigators that conflicted with information released by officials.