Original Article By Erica Pettway

BIRMINGHAM, Ala. (WIAT) – A Northport man announces that he has filed a lawsuit against the Homewood Police Department, Homewood Police Chief Tim Ross and the officers involved in the incident citing excessive force after an interaction he had with officers from the department.

According to the complaint, back on February 24, 2019, 27-year-old, Timothy Stewart, an Ironworker from Northport, was the victim of excessive force at the hands of the officers, who were identified in the complaint as Rodney Adams and Nicholas Altobella.        

Stewart is seeking $1 million from the Homewood Police Dept., Homewood Police Chief Tim Ross and the officers involved in the incident.  

Stewart and his Attorneys are also asking for the Homewood Police Department to release video of the incident.

Stewart is represented by Carlos Moore of The Cochran Firm – Mississippi Delta and Michael T. Bell of The Cochran Firm Birmingham.

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Original Article By Ivana Hrynkiw and Carol Robinson

A Northport man claims he was beaten by Homewood police officers last month while he was detained after a traffic stop, but police say he’s a “multi-state offender” and suffered minor injuries after resisting arrest.

Attorneys for Timothy Stewart, 27, spoke at a press conference Thursday morning and announced Stewart will be filing a federal lawsuit if the city of Homewood does not settle his case within 60 days. They said the city has been served with a notice of intent to file suit.

Homewood police officials said they have not received any official complaint for Stewart nor a notice of claim from any representative of Stewart, or any notice of a filed lawsuit.

Carlos Moore, William Bell, and Jim Bushnell of the Cochran Firm are representing Stewart. They are seeking $1 million in damages and- if the case goes to trial- an injunction against Homewood police to prevent future incidents of abuse. They said they haven’t received an incident report.

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Original Article By Birmingham Times

Special to The Birmingham Times

Attorney Michael T. Bell has joined The Cochran Firm’s Birmingham regional office as managing partner of the firm’s consumer litigation practice group. Historically a plaintiff’s injury firm, the newly formed consumer litigation group will allow The Cochran Firm to represent clients in a wide array of legal matters including: bankruptcy, criminal defense, employment, family law, immigration, mediation, Social Security disability, and worker’s compensation.

Prior to joining The Cochran Firm, Bell served as a creditor-rights attorney with a Birmingham-based law firm. Bell, a first-generation attorney, is a Birmingham native and the son of longtime educator, Alfred J. Bell. Bell is a graduate of Birmingham School of Law and focuses his practice on consumer bankruptcy, immigration, and personal injury.

Bell, who was raised in North Birmingham, is an alumnus of G.W. Carver High School and Jacksonville State University. After completing his undergraduate studies, Bell went on to obtain the degrees of Master of Business Administration and Doctor of Education.

Prior to becoming an attorney, Bell served as a business and technology instructor at Brown Mackie College and Montgomery Public Schools.

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Cyber crimes are a modern and quite popular form of crime. The low chance of getting caught and the possibility of a high reward make it very attractive to criminals. Here are some of the most common cyber crimes you need to know about so you can stay safe on the Internet.

Internet Piracy

Music, media, and software piracy is rampant on the Internet. Numerous laws have been passed to help prosecutors charge those who pirate copyrighted material online, though the big targets by prosecutors are the hubs where pirates gather. From an individual perspective, however, there is another great risk for pirating material: it exposes you to other kinds of cyber crime.


The classic computer virus isn’t as popular as it once was. It has been replaced by a class of software called malware, or malicious software. The purpose of malware is to allow a criminal to gain access to your computer. Sometimes it’s to push lots of ads at you, sometimes it’s gathering personal information, and sometimes it’s to use your computer’s processing power for things like cryptocurrency mining or as a base to perform cyber attacks. A common vector for malware is visiting piracy sites, but it’s not the only source.


Ransomware is a form of malware in a class all its own. This software hijacks your system and encrypts the data on the drive. The user receives a message that they need to send money, often a cryptocurrency like Bitcoin, to a specific address to get their data back. If this software gets into a business, the business is faced with either paying up or shutting down. This is the most dangerous form of malware today.


“Phishing” (pronounced like fishing) is a form of cyber attack designed to steal information. A criminal will forge an email with a link that looks like something legitimate. It can range from faking another company or carefully targeting someone and sending something that looks like it came from a friend or coworker. The purpose of these emails is to steal information, either by installing some piece of malware or redirecting the victim to a website where they put in their information thinking it’s a legitimate site. When this happens, the information can be used for identity theft or to gain access to their account.

These types of crimes are common, but you can protect yourself by being a bit more cautious and wary on the net. You can discover the link to a site simply by hovering over it to see where it’s going. If it’s going to a place that doesn’t seem ‘right,’ then don’t click on it.