Graysville's conflicts of interest questions mount - | Chattanooga News, Weather & Sports

Graysville's conflicts of interest questions mount

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GRAYSVILLE, TN (WRCB) - Jason Erik Redden, the embattled Police Chief of Graysville, Tennessee had his court case scheduled for Wednesday continued until next month.

But new questions are arising as to who helped bail Redden out of jail, and whether or not it's a potential conflict of interest.

"If I was an outsider looking in, I'd say 'hey that's not right', but you have to know the ins and outs of it to be able to make that decision," says Graysville, Tennessee City Commissioner Andy Beene, as he reacts to the paperwork showing the city's vice-mayor Denesa Reel helped get accused Police Chief Erik Redden out of the Rhea County Jail, a day after he was arrested on 10 counts relating to alleged thefts within the Graysville Police Department.

It was Beene, Reel and another commissioner, Michael May, who voted to reinstate Redden to his post, despite the legal uncertainty surrounding him. 

"In my opinion, they're giving him a license to steal, not any other town would not put him to work because that is a waste of taxpayer's money," says Graysville City Commissioner Charles Kaylor, who adds he's not surprised by the vice-mayor's latest move in support for the embattled Redden.

We tried speaking to Graysville vice-mayor Denesa Reel about her posting the surety bond for Chief Redden's bail, she said she did it because she feels the chief is innocent of the charges and she sees no potential conflict of interest by her actions. 

She declined our request for an on camera interview.

"I think she sees it as a trumped up charges, I know I do, if I thought he was guilty I wouldn't be giving you an interview right now," says Beene about Reel's lack of willingness to discuss Chief Redden's status.

"My thoughts are if you have nothing to hide why don't you want to talk?," says Kaylor rhetorically.

Kaylor says the conflicts of interest don't end with Reel and Redden, noting who Comissioner Beene rents a home to, Chief Redden. 

"They had me read a statement that I was his landlord and it could be a conflict of interest," says Beene. "But I think if there was a conflict of interest it would have come out before now."

We tried speaking with Chief Redden Wednesday, but on separate visits to the Graysville Police Department, we found the door locked and no one answering to our repeated knocks.

We reached out to Graysville City Attorney Carol Ann Barron for legal guidance on the conflicts of interest question, but we discovered she has resigned from her post with the city.

Also heading for the door are the city's only two municipal judges, Clancy Covert and Tracie Cox.

We also found out the city's court clerk resigned last week also.

With all of the recent departures, one city commissioner called a special meeting Wedjnesday night.

But some city officials such as Commissioner Kaylor term the meeting as illegal due to a lack of appropriate notification.

As for Chief Redden, his next scheduled court date is September 5th. 

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