NASHVILLE, Tenn. (WKRN) — The city of La Vergne is focused on the future after gaining national attention thanks to a sex scandal that rocked the police department, where allegations of misconduct ranged from officers having sex on duty to lying.
On Monday afternoon, News 2 learned Chief Burrel “Chip” Davis was fired for his alleged knowledge of the sex scandal, among other accusations.
According to an outside agency called in by the city of La Vergne to investigate the alleged sexual misconduct, Davis was aware of the behavior among officers and did not report it or discipline the officers involved. The findings went on to say Davis may have encouraged behavior that violated state and federal law, and he impeded on the initial investigation into the allegations.
Alderman and former La Vergne mayor, Dennis Waldron, told News 2 he was shocked by the findings.
“Chief has been here a long time as a police officer,” Waldron said. “Great guy; everybody respected him. When five or six officers are into this, it’s kind of disturbing for everybody.”
The former chief was initially put on paid administrative leave Monday after the city learned of a federal workplace discrimination complaint that was filed against him, according to officials.
The mayor fired him later that day.
Despite the scandal, Waldron said it’s been “business as usual” in the city, and it’s important the people of La Vergne understand the actions of a few officers do not reflect the entire police department.
“Five officers aren’t going to make or break the police department,” Waldron said. “We’ve got too many good officers down there who are stepping up and will carry La Vergne forward.”
“This isn’t the first time something like this has happened,” he continued. “Hopefully it’ll be the last time it happens in La Vergne.”
The city of La Vergne has already begun a nationwide search for a new leader of the police department. Officials also plan to work to restore the department’s reputation.
“It’s like if a flood or tornado blew by. It’s bad but you’ve got to rebuild,” Waldron said. “If you can’t trust the police, who can you trust is the old saying, but we’ve got good people in the city of La Vergne Police Department.”
The department’s deputy chief, Brent Hatcher, is serving as interim chief.