Notes reveal further corruption in Tennessee Highway Patrol's ranks

| 1/23/2006

The Tennessee Highway Patrol is once again in hot water after an area newspaper uncovered a series of notes that linked the agency and state lawmakers to possible unethical behavior.

On Friday, Jan. 20, The Tennessean newspaper uncovered notes that detailed conversations between former THP commander Col. Lynn Pitts and Lt. Col. Larry Rucker. In the notes – which were freely available as public information – Pitts said THP had given “no telling how many favors and promotions” to officials in the state’s government.

The notes also document a political tug-of-war in the highest branches of the state’s government, including an alleged plan by members of Gov. Phil Bredesen’s staff to smear Deputy Gov. Dave Cooley, after Cooley connected Bredesen with a former aide who was terminated for harassment in the workplace, The Tennessean reported.

The uncovered notes are the latest in a string of scandals in Tennessee ’s state and local police forces, which have been reported by The Tennessean. The newspaper has uncovered more than a dozen incidents, with allegations ranging from sexual misconduct to high-level cronyism throughout the state’s police force and various levels of government.