WILLISTON, ND (KXNET)- A Williston-based radio journalist is lawyering up with a national firm following the seizure of his phone by a BCI agent.

In January, reporter Thomas Simon had his phone seized while at a school board meeting. Now, Simon has retained the law firm Baker, Donelson, Bearman, Caldwell & Berkowitz to represent him in the matter.

According to a statement issued by the Attorney General’s Office back in January, the phone was ultimately returned after then-Attorney General Wayne Stenehjem became involved and advised the BCI agent who seized the phone that state statute required a further court warrant to view the phone’s contents.

Attorney Thomas Barnard issued the following statement to KX News.

“The incident involving Mr. Simon raised serious Constitutional concerns relating to the freedom of the press and free speech in general.  Legal protections for these bedrock American values must be upheld, and action must be taken to ensure that nothing like what occurred in Williston happens again.  We hope to assist Mr. Simon in finding a reasonable path forward toward that goal.”