A conservative group has filed a lawsuit on behalf of "Joe the Plumber," accusing three former state officials in Ohio of violating his privacy when they gathered his personal information in a records search.
The federal lawsuit filed Thursday by Washington-based Judicial Watch says Samuel J. Wurzelbacher suffered emotional distress, harassment and embarrassment as a result of the officials' actions.
It seeks unspecified punitive damages.
The lawsuit names Helen Jones-Kelley, who resigned in December as director of the Ohio Department of Job and Family Services, and two assistants.
Ohio's inspector general found that Jones-Kelley improperly used state computers to find personal information on Wurzelbacher, a Toledo-area man who rose to fame during the presidential campaign after asking Barack Obama about his tax plan.