LA VERGNE, Tenn. (WKRN) — Audio recordings of the investigation into former La Vergne Police Chief Chip Davis revealed new information about the sex scandal that has rocked the department.
In early January, the City of La Vergne hired a third-party investigator to look into allegations claiming the former chief knew about the alleged sexual relationship between some of his officers.
The investigation found Davis was aware of the sex among officers, including between supervisors and subordinates.
In addition, Davis received nude photos and videos of female officers on his third “burner” phone, which he called, “ole boy,” according to the investigation.
In the audio tapes, Davis is interviewed by an attorney hired by the city who goes over text messages believed to have been sent by the former chief and a fired sergeant, Henry “Ty” McGowan.
“He didn’t send them to me as Sergeant McGowan,” Davis said in the recording. “These were personal phones. He sent these to me as Ty and Chip.”
Investigators said the texts prove Davis knew about the sex scandal but failed to report it, and may have even encouraged the behavior and supported a hostile work environment by receiving nude images of officers.
However, in the recorded interview with the investigator, Davis said some of the texts were fake. In addition, he called McGowan a “snitch” for giving the mayor copies of their texts, which is what launched the investigation into the former chief, according to officials.
“These conversations right here, I can’t say all of these are genuine and authentic, but both of these were Chip and Ty, personal phones, talking,” Davis said. “Nothing was official.”
One text thread showed a message attributed to Davis that read, “It’s out in HR. Talking about it now,” referencing the sex scandal, according to the investigation. “All bets off,” another text read.
Davis accused McGowan of deleting some of the messages in the thread, according to the recording.
“When I said, ‘All bets off,’ it was in regards to, ‘Hey, if Lewis doesn’t come and tell me anything, I can’t help him,’ you know, all bets off,” Davis said. “It’s not saying like we had a bet or anything. It goes back to, he [sic] done deleted some stuff.”
Later in the recording, Davis admitted to knowing about the alleged relationships between some of his officers. However, citing city policy, Davis said he was not required to report the information because he learned it from a third party, not those directly involved.
“If you look at the policy, the policy says it is the responsibility and the obligation of the employees involved to disclose the existence of the relationship. Nobody disclosed. Yes, I had knowledge, third party, but nobody knew,” Davis said.
News 2 has been unable to reach the former chief for comment.