News release from Tennessee Bureau of Investigation
JACKSON – A joint investigation by Special Agents with the Tennessee Bureau of Investigation and investigators with the Tennessee Comptroller of the Treasury has resulted in the indictment and arrest of the former Gibson County Sheriff and several of his former employees on charges including theft and official misconduct.
At the request of 28th District Attorney General Pro Tem Rachel Sobrero, on January 28th, TBI Special Agents joined investigators with the Tennessee Comptroller of the Treasury to investigate a report that when current Sheriff Paul Thomas took office in September 2014, items were missing from the Sheriff’s Department. During the course of the investigation, an audit was performed and the results showed several discrepancies between the dates of July 2013 through September 2014, in the areas of employee pay compensation, drug fund accounting, and distribution of prescriptions made out in inmates’ names.
Through the investigation, TBI Agents learned that former Sheriff Chuck Arnold and former Chief Deputy Jeff Maitland allowed employees to be paid for regular and/or overtime hours they didn’t work. Special Agents also developed information that Arnold, Maitland and Renea Terrell, a nurse practitioner who contracted with the Sheriff’s Department, were involved in writing and filling prescriptions for controlled substances in the names of inmates who never received the medication. The investigation further revealed that Arnold removed money from the drug fund for his personal use, and forged documents using another individual’s name.
On Monday, the Gibson County Grand Jury returned indictments charging 12 individuals on a variety of charges. This evening, those individuals were arrested, and at the time of this release, were being booked into the Gibson County Correctional Complex.
The list of those charged is as follows: