CPD officer on administrative leave arrested
A Chattanooga Police officer on administrative leave has been arrested for domestic assault.
Wednesday, December 31st 2014, 9:20 am EST by
Wednesday, December 31st 2014, 5:35 pm EST
A Chattanooga police detective is behind bars after he allegedly hit his mother-in-law in the face on Wednesday morning.
Major Crimes Detective David Catchings, Jr. is charged with simple assault. This is his second arrest within the last four months. Catchings was already on paid administrative leave following a DUI arrest back in September.
"We at the Chattanooga Police Department, and I personally as the chief executive, take domestic violence very, very seriously," said Chattanooga Police Chief Fred Fletcher. "We have absolutely no tolerance for domestic violence amongst our employees."
Police were called to Catchings' in-laws' Hixson home around 3 a.m. Wednesday. Catchings' mother-in-law, who had a swollen nose, said the officer hit her in the face after she told him to leave.
She told police he'd been drinking most of the night and was driving his Dodge Charger around to buy beer.
According to the affidavit, Catchings told her to "Go ahead and call the cops. They will believe me before you because I'm a cop."
"These allegations will be investigated very thoroughly and as quickly and efficiently as we can," Fletcher said.
Catchings was placed on administrative leave in September following a DUI arrest. Back then, a Hamilton County Sheriff's deputy found two open beer bottles in his car. Catchings reportedly told the officer that he "should be out arresting bad guys" and called him a "rookie who didn't know anything about police work."
Catchings could face a new DUI charge for this latest incident when lab test results come back.
A separate investigation was launched after Wednesday morning's incident, and Catchings will remain on paid leave.
Fletcher said that's standard policy.
"It is non-punitive, non-disciplinary," he said. "If we were to discipline an officer while they were being investigated, it might pre-empt future discipline when the misconduct was fully investigated. And vice versa, we don't want to discipline somebody who only has allegations of misconduct."
Catchings' bond is set at $4,000. He will appear in court for the assault charge next week. A separate hearing for the September DUI is scheduled in February.