The Heat Is Off 

FBI halts police probe

FBI halts police probe

From "Scene" Staff Reports

A Federal Bureau of Investigation probe into allegations of corruption in the Metro Police Department concluded in less than two weeks, according to sources in the FBI and the police department. On June 26, when the Scene first reported news of the FBI investigation, details were sketchy. Sources now confirm that the FBI probe resulted from charges raised by former police officer Andy Gluck.

The same sources say the investigation consisted of little more than a couple of perfunctory calls placed by a local FBI official, who decided that the situation did not warrant further investigation.

Gluck, who left the police force in late 1996, is suing former Metro Police Chief Robert Kirchner, Major Carl Dollarhide, and Metro Government for allegedly retaliating against him for statements he made about the department. In 1995, during a Metro Council committee meeting, Gluck publicly charged that the police department was improperly and selectively enforcing a Metro alarm ordinance. Gluck was later reassigned to the midnight shift at the police department’s tow-in lot.

Gluck’s case, which implies corruption on the part of senior officers, was tried in March in U.S. District Court and ended in a hung jury. A second trial is tentatively scheduled for September, but settlement talks are apparently under way.

In a letter to the Nashville Scene on July 8, Police Chief Emmett Turner requested an “immediate retraction” of the Scene’s earlier story in which the newspaper reported the investigation. Turner stated the article was “unequivocally and totally false.”

Here’s how the Scene came to print the story:

Approximately two weeks before the Scene reported on an FBI investigation, Scene senior writer Willy Stern received a phone call from an FBI agent. The agent stated that he was investigating allegations, raised by Gluck, of corruption and extortion in Metro’s police department. The agent asked if Stern would be willing to share his sources with the FBI. After checking with Scene editor Bruce Dobie and with outside counsel, Stern declined. Shortly thereafter, it appears, the FBI’s probe dwindled to a halt.

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