Damascus police chief was veteran off...

Damascus police chief was veteran officer

There are 206 comments on the News Channel 11 story from Jun 25, 2007, titled Damascus police chief was veteran officer. In it, News Channel 11 reports that:

“We always thought he was a watchdog on that front as opposed to somebody that was actually involved in it.”

Damascus Police Chief Tony Richardson, who had no comment Monday on his arrest on drug-related charges, served as a police officer in two other local towns. via News Channel 11

Join the discussion below, or Read more at News Channel 11.

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Glade Spring Resident

Hillsville, VA

#1 Jun 25, 2007
What really pisses me off is the fact that he was once Chief of Police here in Glade Spring and came highly reccomended by none other than Scott Sexton former Chief of Police in Chilhowie who is now working for the sheriffs office in washington county. tony richardson, scott sexton, dwayne sheffield, and brian doss all worked together in chilhowie as police officers. sexton was fired for what some would call embezzlement, but to here it from the current mayor you wouldn't know that. Richardson was let go for stealing evidence and obstruction of justice. guess where these two cats landed? here in glade spring virginia! Why? inept council members!! This town of ours was fine and dandy with the Officers' that we had. people we could trust in and now they are all gone due in large part to sexton and richardson. Chief hawethorne, Freeman, Smith, all of them gone and why? these were people who had given their all for the town and its citizens. Hawethorne and been here twenty some years, Freeman had been here almost twenty and smith was fairly new but was sooo personable and easy to talk to not to mention his father whom i knew growing up was a police officer here. good people gone and for what??? did anyone ever stop to think and ask the question about where was sexton all of these years while this nonsense went on in his department? right in the fu*&%ng middle of it and now hes with our fair and honest sheriffs department. this goes further than what you people might think!! im ashamed that i sit back and let the town council of glade spring bring in such rift raft only to watch those that we trusted dearly get shoved out the door.
council member

Hillsville, VA

#2 Jun 25, 2007
Let me get the facts straight for you. Some on this Council may in fact be inept as you so kindly put it, but I am not one of those unfortunate few. You put off on the Council as being responsible for hiring the two Officers mentioned (Sexton, Richardson) but let me try to correct that. If it doesn't appeal to you then you are welcome to view the minutes of these meetings. First of all, anytime a Police Officer position is open with the Town we look for the Police Department and its' Officers to reccomend applicants to these positions after conducting a through background investigation and interview with the applicant. In Scott Sextons' case he came highly reccomended for the Chief of Police Position by the other Officers in the department which I believe were K. Freeman & M. Smith @ the time. The position of Chief of Police was offered to K. Freeman who had been with the department almost twenty years and he declined. Smith had only been with us a short while and had no administrative experience. However he was a very efficent Officer. Therefore, we looked outside the department and left it up to the Officers' to reccomend a candidate. They reccomended Scott Sexton and that is who we hired. The vote was unamimous. As far as Tony Richardson is concerned, when he was terminated from the Police Department in Chilhowie for charges pending against him it was Scott sexton who reccomended him for a position with our Police Department. Richardsdon was hired. When Scott Sexton left the Department to pursue a career with the Sheriffs' Office, the position of Chief became avaliable. It was our intention to promote within the department rather than hire outside. My obvious choice was K. Freeman who had been with the department for almost twenty years but small town politics would not see it that way. Richardson was named Chief even though he still faced charges in Smyth County. My thought was here you have Officer Freeman, solid member of the community, department veteran, trusted and looked up to throughout the community. Why not him. Again small town politics. Of course my vote was not for Richardson and now I can look back and say "I told you so!" Yes, I deeply agree with you that we lost three of the best Officers' we have ever had and trusted in this community (Hawethorne, Freeman, Smith) but the good ole' boy plays a hand in small town politics and I am only one person. I in my personal opinion and from what I gather from some of the other citizens would like to see those Officers' back out on our streets, meaning Freeman, Smith, and Hawethorne. People we knew and could trust, not ones running from trouble in some other jurisdiction. Again I am only one voice, it is you the citizens' who need to voice these opinions at Council meetings.
Damascus resident

Johnson City, TN

#3 Jun 26, 2007
The bottom line is Tony Richardson was hired by the town councils of both Glade Spring and Damascus under good old boy politics. Damascus didn't even do a background check. Pathetic!
glade spring resident

Hillsville, VA

#4 Jun 26, 2007
The sad thing is we lost three great Officers due in large part to Mr. Sexton and Mr. Richardson. Regardless of what the council did where is the humanity in this? Our town council brought in two individuals running from trouble in another jurisdiction due in large part to goood ole' boy politics. I'm sure the same thing goes on all around this area. Small town politics and the who you know attitude that seems to determine wether or not you get the job. Background checks with these small departments are a joke and most of the time not even followed through. If Damascus was do conduct a overhaul on thier Police Department they would find a few more Officers only running from trouble in some other jurisdiction. This I know for a fact. It seems that these small town departments are a magnet for trouble. Look at Glade Spring; Brought in Scott Sexton as their Chief shortly after he was fire for embezzlement in Chilhowie. Then Scott Sexton brought in Tony Richardson as an Investigator for the department after he was fired from the same department(Chilhowie) for stealing evidence (guns & Drugs) and charged with such by the state police. Soon after Sexton was hired by the Sheriffs' Office and Richardson was named Chief even though you had veteran Officers' in the department more qualified for the position. I think Richardson knew his time was up here in Glade after rumors arose about his "possible" drug use and being involved in an accident with a train while on duty. Therefore what do you do? You move on to the next unsuspecting town and play your same game. This behavior has gone on for years and I believe it is due time to change the ways these departments hire Officers' Even if it means bringing in the State Police to conduct Interviews and background investigations. Small town politics is the sole reason you're stuck with the Officers' you depend soo much on! The good ole' boy days I think have come to an end-About time. Take this into perspective; All of these Officers' who have been charged here recently from rape to sodomy to distribution of drugs, all mind you, all, came from the same department. Chilhowie. Brought up, trained, and sheltered by none other than Scott Sexton. Our essteemed school resource officer. All of these things went on from what I understand for years at the Chilhowie Police Department but was neatly covered up along with things at the saltville police department who are a far cry from perfect. The only people willing to make a stand for change in these two departments were the newly elceted Mayors. Henegar was successful in removing Sexton, only to send him here to Glade Spring. Cambpell however wasn't so fortunate. Small town politics again, wouldn't let him do the right thing which was to overhaul that department-it needs it. But, even if he deemed successful in his attempt Surber would have just went to another small town department willing to have him just like sexton-apple doesn't fall far from the tree. Think about it. All these Officers' and all of these charges-where did they come from? Chilhowie & Saltville"!! Its' past time for change in these departments, major change, and instead of complaining about it people need to stand up before its' too late and its' your daughter were reading about getting raped or your son buying drugs from the local police chief or his officers while he turns his back. I think i've said enough!!!!!!!!!!
AAA

Denver, CO

#5 Jun 27, 2007
I will tell you what the sad thing is.... the only thing you all are doing is repeating the same tired, rude, thoughtless things over and over again. Did any of you ever stop to think that maybe this could be a mistake? That slandering someone who has not been proven guilty may not be the right thing to do? Stop to think for one minute, what if Tony RIchardson really is innocent?? You all have branded him for life! Think of his family, his kids? Would you want to read all this if this was someone in your family? Would you want people who you grew up with, and thought were your friends, to be saying things so hurtful and so unfair if it were your son or brother or father? Would you want to have to avoid the news and newspapers and peoples stares and scowls?? Wouldn't you want them to have a fair shot at justice? I REALLY WANT TO KNOW WHAT EVER HAPPENED TO INNOCENT BEFORE PROVEN GUILTY???? They have no real evidence against him. Why do you think he isn't being arraigned for another month? They need time to scramble to find evidence because they don't have a case. But regardless, he is branded. I think if the people had their way, he would be crucified by the end of the work week. If you knew him, you would know that these accusations and rumors are ridiculous. He is a good man and he worked so hard to be a good cop, but no one will ever remember that. Have your opinions, but think of someone other than yourselves for once and keep them to yourselves! Have a little compassion.
Coincil Member

Hillsville, VA

#6 Jun 29, 2007
First of all, I would like to commend you on your compassion. Very nice to see someone looking out for Mr. Richardson. However, the one thing that really bothers me is people who seem to talk about things that they "think" they know about or in terms you may understand "out of your ass!" Have you not picked up a paper, have you not turned on the news??? This man was and is still being investigated by local, state and federal authorities!!! You come off like this is just all made up. So in other words the dozen or more officers involved in this investigation are all liars and Mr. Richardson is a good man and wouldn't do anything like that!! Its' all in black and white!! Read it, watch the news. I'm sick of the feel sorry attitude for this man who was selling this posion to our children while wearing a badge!!!! And I don't buy for one minute that you're from Denver, Colorado! You are probably on of the goons still employeed with the Town and that is one town that needs a complete overhaul of its' police department because I know for a FACT their sheltering two other officers running from trouble and probably doing the same thing richardson was doing. Take a good look. Do a background check. You'll see why two officers there are not hired anywhere else. Chilhowie, Saltville, Glade Spring, And Damascus are nothing but sess pools for those running from trouble or can't get hired anywhere else because of their background. We have dealt with the meth problem for sooo long now and watched as people lost everything and some their lives because of it and the only thing that we are able to do is sit back and put complete faith in the officers we hire to curtail it and keep it off our streets and now you a local police officer busted by FEDERAL authorites for distributing this posion and had been doing so even when he work in Glade Spring. If one is doing it how many other officers are????? Someone best take a good hard look at the before mentioned sess pools in this area and start cleaning house. Start with the top and work your way to the bottom. You'll be suprised at what you find or should I say who you will find and what jurisdiction their running from!!!! Its' time the State Police stepped in and conducted interviews and overseeing the hiring of officers and I can guarantee you that the officers you see now up and down the streets of chilhowie, saltville, glade and damascus want be any longer. Citizens need to demand investigations and background checks into these officers. They have the right and we can do it. but I can't do it alone. I'm only one voice and it takes many to override a police department with its' small town politics!!! Sooner or later god will cut you down and you know who you are!!
don morgan

Dyke, VA

#8 Jun 29, 2007
I agree 100% with your comments about the police departments in the 4 small towns that are the subject of many discussions at this time. One way to overcome this would be for all the towns to take the money in their budgets for police activities and give it to the Washington County Sherrifs Dept. and let them hire additional officers to protect and serve the citizens of these towns. Two months ago Tony Richardson asked the Damascus Town Council for $2500 dollars to conduct a drug sting operation in the town but being probably the only sensible thing that this council has done they voted it down. Understand that the Chief was "devastated"-this seems to be a good word to use here since the Council and the remaining police officers were so "devastated" about what happened.
AAA

Denver, CO

#9 Jun 29, 2007
First, I want to clear up that I do live in Colorado. Just because I live here now, doesn't mean I didn't live in VIrginia at some point. I have nothing to do with any police department anywhere in any state and after all this, nor would I ever want to be. I have seen many of the articles and many of the newscasts. I cannot stress this enough... JUST BECAUSE IT IS IN PRINT OR ON THE NEWS DOES NOT NECESSARILY MEAN IT IS TRUE OR ACCURATE OR THE WHOEL STORY!!! There are a lot of things that will come out soon that will exonerate him. I have a lot of faith in him. I know him and I know that he isn't capable of doing something so horrible. All you have to do to get someone indicted of a crime is one person files a report and testifies to a grand jury. Doesn't mean they are telling the truth. There are many other cases of this. Innocent until proven guilty. Now they have to prove it. But the sad thing is is that it doesn't matter even if they prove that he is 100% innocent. The court of public opinion has already made up their minds or there would be no discussion about this. He could never work anywhere in the state or surrounding states again. Too many people believe what they see in the news, if you knew Tony, you wouldn't believe it either.
me again

Orlando, FL

#10 Jun 30, 2007
I am simply saying that these small town departments need to be overseen by others rather than your small town politics and the who you know attitude that seems to determine who gets the job or not regardless and I mean regardless of your background. Someone needs to take charge of these departments and yes i do have faith in our State Police Officers not built up hope by your local chief who claims everyone in his department his a "GOOD" guy!! Small town politics are killing us!!! Period......
concil member

Orlando, FL

#11 Jun 30, 2007
Nice to here from someone who uses a litlle common sense rather than the feel sorry for him attitude that seems to come about. You made a great point about the 2500.00 dollar request that was made by the esteemed Chief. What would he have done done with??? Fill his pockets like his former boss (SEXTON)did in Chihowie which got him fired and which he landed in glade spring as the chief, brought richardson with him, one his our essteemed school resource officer for the fair and honest sheriffs' office and the other a chief of police not in one town but two towns in the last two years. do you see the revolving door effect and why small town politics and the good ole boy attitude just doesn't work with these departments and with officers that where supposed to depend on based on the words of a small few. Bring in someone other than the local boy chief doing a favor for his next door neighbor, or a family member to do the hiring of these officers. I know if you dipped into the bucket of these police departments you would find officers with backgrounds that i wouldn't trust hem to watch my dog much less my kids. I just feel that if as citizens, that I can lay my head down at night and trust that the officer we hired is watching by back and not the back of some young girl bent over the desk. I should not have to depend on the word of some cheif of police who is no better than the people they have to take to jail on a daily basis. Look around, Chilhowie, Saltville, Glade Spring, Damascus, and all of the other small town departments in this area and you want find nothing but officers hiding out from trouble, small town politics, and more trouble than people what to deal with. Thats the problem these days is that the citizens of the small towns don't stand up and speak out about theese departments and thier officers simply because their looking for favors. I can go on for years about the trash that works in these departments and it would not matter. Small town politcs win it everytime.
concil member

Orlando, FL

#12 Jun 30, 2007
Again, here we go with the sudden "DEVASTATION" that was put on all of the other Officers'!! You cannot possibly believe that these other Officers' didn't know what was going on!!! If you will look close you'll find that two of these Officers' are running from trouble in another jurisdiction involving sex with minors and drugs and if you will look who did Mr. Richardson bring with him from Glade Spring!! People need to demand background checks into thse individuals whom are sooo "DEVASTED" over the Chief being charged because what you will find you will not believe. Whos' to say that these Officers' didn't know it was going on. As close and tight lipped as departments are around here they like to keep their front porch clean and what goes on behind closed doors goes on. You're right about extending funds to the local sheriffs' departments for extra Officers to patrol these small towns and do away with the small town departments who don't employee any more than five officers and again most of them running from trouble or can't get hired anywhere else due to their background. Think about it. Why would you as a police officer want to be stuck in some small town department making no more than 20,000 dollars a year unless you are hiding from something or your background tells you that no one else will have you. Again, bring in the state, federal, or some other agency to do the hiring and background checks on these individuals inspiring to become local cops and you'll be surprised at what you find. Any individual in this state or this part anyway, can pay their way through the Police Academy, become certified and start working at your local department in a matter of time and without a background check. departments don't do them, academy just wants your money, regardless of who you are or what you have done. I will gurantee you that at least 70% of these officers working in thse departments are there because they have no where else to go or are running from trouble somewhere else, or because of small town politics that lets a chief undeserving of the badge he wears hire who he wants based on what his friends and fellow officers tell him without doing a through background check. These departments are so close knit that is almost impossible to do anything with them. Its' high time that this matter is brought to national attention because that is the only way you are going to clear out these sess pools we call police departments in this area!!!!\
don morgan wrote:
I agree 100% with your comments about the police departments in the 4 small towns that are the subject of many discussions at this time. One way to overcome this would be for all the towns to take the money in their budgets for police activities and give it to the Washington County Sherrifs Dept. and let them hire additional officers to protect and serve the citizens of these towns. Two months ago Tony Richardson asked the Damascus Town Council for $2500 dollars to conduct a drug sting operation in the town but being probably the only sensible thing that this council has done they voted it down. Understand that the Chief was "devastated"-this seems to be a good word to use here since the Council and the remaining police officers were so "devastated" about what happened.
Billy Bob

United States

#13 Jun 30, 2007
We would like to know why the Damascus town council is covering up for the other two dirt cops. Who had sex with two girls while on duty ? Mr. Jones knew about it just after it happen all the other officer also knew, along with the Chief Tony. Chief Tony advised his fine two whore around buddys(not worry I the Big Chief will take care of you.So he did that by BSing the council. The two girls went to Mr. Cartwrite who did not do a thing about it.He did not even call the girls in to talk with them. We would like to know why Office Rouse and Officer Turner have not been fired ? Why the state police has not been called in to look at this matter ? How can I get a job with the Damascs Police dept. so I can have sex and get paid for it ?
Joe Alvarado

Covington, VA

#14 Jun 30, 2007
Hey Billy Bob, how u doing? Glad to see that you got the story on the other two scum bags who are on the Damascus Police Dept. A formal letter of complaint was filed by the two young ladies whom you refer to. It was hand carried to Mitchell Greer who was supposed to take it to the Police Advisory committe and I think that he did that but it seems that at this meeting Mr. Parris, the father-in-law of Kermit Turner intercepted the letter and disposed of it. Mr. Parris is not a member of the Police Advisory group but he always attends the meeting to protect his son-in-law as he did in this case. It appears that the individuals involved in this mess are-Creed Jones-Mayor, Council members Parris, Cartwright,Greer and Blevins, Kermit Turner and John Rouse-Police Officers{?}. If the council does not dismiss Turner and Rouse then I intend to ask for a full investigation by the State Police and I do have a copy of the complaint, phone records and other info pertinent to this outrage. Oh, by the way our beloved Chief of Police was also aware of what happened here. There is so much more to this story that you would not believe it. When we have police officers that are trading off tickets in return for sexual favors that shows you the depth our police dept has sunk to. This will not be allowed to be swept under the carpet by our stumbling, bumbling council and if they think that it going to happen they are sure in for a rude awakening. The whole group mentioned here should be prosecuted to the fullest extent of the law.
Mrs Rutherford

Johnson City, TN

#15 Jul 1, 2007
Actually Billy Bob, and I know who you are, you are the officer who has been fired and the girl in question is your mistress who you were having sex with on duty for months before your termination. You also were stealing the police department blind. Since your attempts to discredit the Damascus Police Department have failed with every legitimate official as well as the media now you are trying it in an anonymous chat room. If anyone would like to point the finger at dirty cops in Damascus look to the two who have already left the department on bad terms with the council.
Billy Bob wrote:
We would like to know why the Damascus town council is covering up for the other two dirt cops. Who had sex with two girls while on duty ? Mr. Jones knew about it just after it happen all the other officer also knew, along with the Chief Tony. Chief Tony advised his fine two whore around buddys(not worry I the Big Chief will take care of you.So he did that by BSing the council. The two girls went to Mr. Cartwrite who did not do a thing about it.He did not even call the girls in to talk with them. We would like to know why Office Rouse and Officer Turner have not been fired ? Why the state police has not been called in to look at this matter ? How can I get a job with the Damascs Police dept. so I can have sex and get paid for it ?
Mrs Rutherford

Johnson City, TN

#16 Jul 1, 2007
I believe Don Morgan is one of the councilmen who voted to bring Tony Richardson in as Chief of Police in Damascus without an adequate background check. Now that the people of damascus have voted him out of his position on the town council he is trying to discredit everything the new council does. Mr. Morgan also supported Michael Rutherford as acting chief before the hiring of Richardson. Rutherford is no longer employed with the town due to dishonest conduct as well as sexual activity on duty with someone other than his wife. And by the way Mr. Morgan, if you would like to talk about wasting the towns money would you like to explain why you had a mobile home unlawfuly buried on the bayer property which then cost the town almost $10,000 to remove. The current council may not be perfect but you have no room to talk considering the poor decisions made by you and your friends on the previous council.
don morgan wrote:
I agree 100% with your comments about the police departments in the 4 small towns that are the subject of many discussions at this time. One way to overcome this would be for all the towns to take the money in their budgets for police activities and give it to the Washington County Sherrifs Dept. and let them hire additional officers to protect and serve the citizens of these towns. Two months ago Tony Richardson asked the Damascus Town Council for $2500 dollars to conduct a drug sting operation in the town but being probably the only sensible thing that this council has done they voted it down. Understand that the Chief was "devastated"-this seems to be a good word to use here since the Council and the remaining police officers were so "devastated" about what happened.
Damascus Citizen

Johnson City, TN

#17 Jul 1, 2007
Actually if you were to check the background of the remaining officers in Damascus you would find that they are not in fact running from another jurisdiction. You would find that the remaining officers were hired by the town and sent to the academy with the Damascus Police Dept. They have in fact never worked for any other police dept. Perhaps if you checked into these matters before posting comments you would not sound like the uninformed fool you are.
glade spring resident wrote:
The sad thing is we lost three great Officers due in large part to Mr. Sexton and Mr. Richardson. Regardless of what the council did where is the humanity in this? Our town council brought in two individuals running from trouble in another jurisdiction due in large part to goood ole' boy politics. I'm sure the same thing goes on all around this area. Small town politics and the who you know attitude that seems to determine wether or not you get the job. Background checks with these small departments are a joke and most of the time not even followed through. If Damascus was do conduct a overhaul on thier Police Department they would find a few more Officers only running from trouble in some other jurisdiction. This I know for a fact. It seems that these small town departments are a magnet for trouble. Look at Glade Spring; Brought in Scott Sexton as their Chief shortly after he was fire for embezzlement in Chilhowie. Then Scott Sexton brought in Tony Richardson as an Investigator for the department after he was fired from the same department(Chilhowie) for stealing evidence (guns & Drugs) and charged with such by the state police. Soon after Sexton was hired by the Sheriffs' Office and Richardson was named Chief even though you had veteran Officers' in the department more qualified for the position. I think Richardson knew his time was up here in Glade after rumors arose about his "possible" drug use and being involved in an accident with a train while on duty. Therefore what do you do? You move on to the next unsuspecting town and play your same game. This behavior has gone on for years and I believe it is due time to change the ways these departments hire Officers' Even if it means bringing in the State Police to conduct Interviews and background investigations. Small town politics is the sole reason you're stuck with the Officers' you depend soo much on! The good ole' boy days I think have come to an end-About time. Take this into perspective; All of these Officers' who have been charged here recently from rape to sodomy to distribution of drugs, all mind you, all, came from the same department. Chilhowie. Brought up, trained, and sheltered by none other than Scott Sexton. Our essteemed school resource officer. All of these things went on from what I understand for years at the Chilhowie Police Department but was neatly covered up along with things at the saltville police department who are a far cry from perfect. The only people willing to make a stand for change in these two departments were the newly elceted Mayors. Henegar was successful in removing Sexton, only to send him here to Glade Spring. Cambpell however wasn't so fortunate. Small town politics again, wouldn't let him do the right thing which was to overhaul that department-it needs it. But, even if he deemed successful in his attempt Surber would have just went to another small town department willing to have him just like sexton-apple doesn't fall far from the tree. Think about it. All these Officers' and all of these charges-where did they come from? Chilhowie & Saltville"!! Its' past time for change in these departments, major change, and instead of complaining about it people need to stand up before its' too late and its' your daughter were reading about getting raped or your son buying drugs from the local police chief or his officers while he turns his back. I think i've said enough!!!!!!!!!!
Mrs Rutherford

Johnson City, TN

#18 Jul 1, 2007
Joe Alvarado you are Billy Bob. The only officer trading tickets for sexual favors would have been you and you have already been dismissed from your position with the Damascus Police Dept. And by the way since your mistress is the female spreading these rumors she has no credibility with anyone. Maybe you should give up your vindictive nature and go about your job with the Tennessee game department before someone lets them in on YOUR abuses of police authority as well as your thieving nature.
Joe Alvarado wrote:
Hey Billy Bob, how u doing? Glad to see that you got the story on the other two scum bags who are on the Damascus Police Dept. A formal letter of complaint was filed by the two young ladies whom you refer to. It was hand carried to Mitchell Greer who was supposed to take it to the Police Advisory committe and I think that he did that but it seems that at this meeting Mr. Parris, the father-in-law of Kermit Turner intercepted the letter and disposed of it. Mr. Parris is not a member of the Police Advisory group but he always attends the meeting to protect his son-in-law as he did in this case. It appears that the individuals involved in this mess are-Creed Jones-Mayor, Council members Parris, Cartwright,Greer and Blevins, Kermit Turner and John Rouse-Police Officers{?}. If the council does not dismiss Turner and Rouse then I intend to ask for a full investigation by the State Police and I do have a copy of the complaint, phone records and other info pertinent to this outrage. Oh, by the way our beloved Chief of Police was also aware of what happened here. There is so much more to this story that you would not believe it. When we have police officers that are trading off tickets in return for sexual favors that shows you the depth our police dept has sunk to. This will not be allowed to be swept under the carpet by our stumbling, bumbling council and if they think that it going to happen they are sure in for a rude awakening. The whole group mentioned here should be prosecuted to the fullest extent of the law.
Discusted with hipocrits

Johnson City, TN

#19 Jul 1, 2007
Background checks are mandatory with the state department of criminal justice services. These are fingerprint based checks ran through the FBI not by "small town politics". Once again we see people who do not have a clue posting misinformation. Also the officer responsible for running Tony Richardsons criminal history is the one posting on here as Billy Bob amoung other names and Don Morgan is the Council Member who supported Tony Richardson "without a background check". You can see the real criminals are the ones posting comments on this site to make the remaining officers look as bad as the poster does in the public eyes.
concil member wrote:
Again, here we go with the sudden "DEVASTATION" that was put on all of the other Officers'!! You cannot possibly believe that these other Officers' didn't know what was going on!!! If you will look close you'll find that two of these Officers' are running from trouble in another jurisdiction involving sex with minors and drugs and if you will look who did Mr. Richardson bring with him from Glade Spring!! People need to demand background checks into thse individuals whom are sooo "DEVASTED" over the Chief being charged because what you will find you will not believe. Whos' to say that these Officers' didn't know it was going on. As close and tight lipped as departments are around here they like to keep their front porch clean and what goes on behind closed doors goes on. You're right about extending funds to the local sheriffs' departments for extra Officers to patrol these small towns and do away with the small town departments who don't employee any more than five officers and again most of them running from trouble or can't get hired anywhere else due to their background. Think about it. Why would you as a police officer want to be stuck in some small town department making no more than 20,000 dollars a year unless you are hiding from something or your background tells you that no one else will have you. Again, bring in the state, federal, or some other agency to do the hiring and background checks on these individuals inspiring to become local cops and you'll be surprised at what you find. Any individual in this state or this part anyway, can pay their way through the Police Academy, become certified and start working at your local department in a matter of time and without a background check. departments don't do them, academy just wants your money, regardless of who you are or what you have done. I will gurantee you that at least 70% of these officers working in thse departments are there because they have no where else to go or are running from trouble somewhere else, or because of small town politics that lets a chief undeserving of the badge he wears hire who he wants based on what his friends and fellow officers tell him without doing a through background check. These departments are so close knit that is almost impossible to do anything with them. Its' high time that this matter is brought to national attention because that is the only way you are going to clear out these sess pools we call police departments in this area!!!!\<quoted text>
Pro Police

Johnson City, TN

#20 Jul 1, 2007
Everyone here is so quick to judge the rest of the officers in Damascus. Every time an officer is arrested the rumors fly that the rest are involved which is usually proven untrue in the end. Did it ever occur to anyone that perhaps the other officers were aware of what was going on but on the investigative end instead of the criminal end. Knowing the officers on the department I find this more likely than that they would be involved with Tony Richardson. The decent citizens of damascus who know these officers all say they are not suprised about Richardson but they also say they know the rest of the department is not involved and has the towns support.
Pro Police

Johnson City, TN

#21 Jul 1, 2007
To set the record straight. Tony Richardson has had a poor reputation in law enforcement. Hardly anyone in this profession will defend him. The other officers in that department however have an excellent reputation. The agencies, both federal state and local, investigating Richardson have a high amount of respect for the remaining officers. If you would like an opinion of the integrity of these officers ask people who would know. Talk to Sheriff Newman as well as the director of the police academy in bristol. They will tell you that the remaining officers are not cut from the same cloth as Richardson.

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