NASHVILLE, Tenn. (WKRN) — Fired La Vergne Police Sgt. Henry “Ty” McGowan became one step closer to losing his badge forever following an informal hearing where Peace Officer Standards and Training Commission members voted to recommend his decertification Thursday.
McGowan was fired from the La Vergne Police Department in January after an investigation found him in violation of department policies, including sexual harassment, truthfulness and workplace violence, according to Interim Police Chief Brent Hatcher.
Even though McGowan was demoted in 2007 after the city said he had sex on duty, he denied taking part in the most recent sex scandal in the La Vergne Police Department, according to the city’s investigation.
There was some confusion on McGowan’s whereabouts during his POST Commission hearing Thursday. At first, McGowan reportedly told commissioners he accidentally went to the wrong building for his hearing. Then, his attorney asked commissioners if McGowan’s hearing was taking place on that date, according to members.
“It appears that he forgot,” said Rafael Bello, a POST investigator. “I have the communication that he was notified that he was on today’s date. Then, I received a text message from staff at the academy that Mr. McGowan had shown up there and was headed this way, and that was 25 minutes ago.”
McGowan never showed up to the hearing.
The POST Commission ultimately voted to recommend the full commission decertify McGowan after members said they gave him plenty of notice about the informal hearing.
Three former Memphis police officers involved in the Tyre Nichols case were also on the agenda. Demetrius Haley, Emit Martin and Justin Smith were not in attendance for their hearings.
Their attorneys asked commissioners to place their cases in “pending,” but, since they did not make the request in person, commissioners voted to recommend their decertification.
McGowan’s, Haley’s, Martin’s, and Smith’s cases will be presented to the full POST Commission at a later date. The members will have the final say in whether they should be decertified. If they vote in favor of decertification, the former officers will have 30 days to appeal the decision. If so, their cases would go to trial.