Judge criticizes Wyoming's treatment of trucker kidnapped by trooper; calls it sleazy

CASPER, Wyo. (AP) — A federal judge says the state of Wyoming's treatment of a Wal-Mart trucker kidnapped by a rogue state trooper during an aborted murder plot was sleazy.

But U.S. District Judge William Downes didn't rule Monday on the state's request to dismiss the trucker's lawsuit.

Former trooper Franklin Ryle pleaded guilty last year to charges that he kidnapped Colorado trucker Richard Smidt and intended to kill him. Ryle said he planned to stage an accident with Smidt's truck to extort money from the company.

The Wyoming Attorney General's Office asked Downes to dismiss Smidt's lawsuit because he signed a settlement last year. Smidt's lawyer says the settlement is void because state officials never told Smidt that Ryle intended to kill him.