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Picture from THE HUNTER REPORT archives

Former Lenoir City Recorder Bobby Johnson, JR., Nov. Council meeting

 

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KNOXVILLE NEWS SENTINEL

Former Loudon County official refuses to take polygraph test

Ex-Loudon official working with TBI on missing records

By Natalie Neysa Alund

Thursday, February 24, 2011

 

Former Lenoir City Treasurer/Recorder/Clerk Bobby Johnson Jr. said he will not take the polygraph test he was asked to take today as part of an investigation into missing personnel records of four assistant clerks.

Johnson, who resigned from his post Dec. 31 and asked to return to his former maintenance position with parks and recreation, said Wednesday that he told Tennessee Bureau of Investigation agent Jason Legg he would not take the test because he did not trust its results.

Johnson said Legg told him his refusal was not an issue.

Agents have been questioning people about missing paperwork that centers on assistant clerks Jennifer Jackson, Shelley Herron, Rebekah Haydon and Julie Harvey. They had been targeted for reprimands by Johnson and his predecessor Debbie Cook, the two former elected officials said, for reasons including falsifying time cards, writing faulty arrest warrants and sending pornographic e-mail at work.

Cook, who retired early from her post in 2007, and Johnson said they attempted to reprimand the clerks but that when they alerted some city officials about the reprimands, documentation was not always placed into the clerks' personnel records.

In January, the News Sentinel obtained copies of July 2010 reprimands written by Johnson, but they were not in the clerks' personnel files during a public inspection by a reporter. Loudon County District Attorney General Russell Johnson then asked TBI to investigate.

Johnson could not be reached for comment Wednesday. But TBI spokeswoman Kristin Helm wrote in an e-mail only that the investigation is open and ongoing.

Cook has previously said that during her interview with Legg, the agent asked her questions that included if she'd ever been prohibited from punishing assistant clerks.

Natalie Neysa Alund may be reached at 865-342-6307.

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02-24-2011