Tag Archives: gwyn

TBI Chief Mum on Trigger to Ford-Shipley Probe

Tennessee Bureau of Investigation Director Mark Gwyn won’t disclose details concerning what sparked a TBI investigation into allegations of legislative misconduct by state Reps. Tony Shipley and Dale Ford, reports the Kingsport Times-News.
The TBI probe focused on whether the two upstate GOP lawmakers illegally pressured the Tennessee Board of Nursing to reinstate three nurse practitioners suspended from practicing in March 2010. The nursing board took emergency action against the three nurses, who were accused of over-prescribing medications at the now-defunct Appalachian Medical Center in Johnson City. Last month, Davidson County District Attorney General Torry Johnson decided there was no evidence the lawmakers’ actions could sustain criminal charges.
During a recent meeting with members of the Times-News Editorial Board, Gwyn was asked what piece of information triggered the TBI probe and where it came from.
“I cannot comment on that. … To comment on any of it would just not be proper right now,” Gwyn responded during a meeting to tout a public safety action plan put together by Gov. Bill Haslam’s administration
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TBI Wants $500K to Buy Drugs

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) — The head of the Tennessee Bureau of Investigation is asking lawmakers for money to buy drugs.
TBI Director Mark Gwyn told the House Finance Committee on Monday that his agency has done without its “confidential fund” since it was cut from the budget in 2009. The TBI uses the money to set up sting operations on drug dealers.
Gwyn told the panel that the lack of funding means the TBI can’t act on tips or requests for assistance from local law enforcement agencies.
“There’s no doubt that that has affected public safety in this state,” he said. “We get calls that people tell us, ‘Look, I can buy drugs from this person, or we want to start a drug operation,’ and we simply don’t have the money.”
Gwyn told reporters after the hearing that he would like to see $500,000 appropriated to get the program going again. There is no money in Republican Gov. Bill Haslam’s proposal to fund the program.
“We need that money back, so we can go back to buying drugs in this state,” Gwyn said.
Gwyn was asked by Rep. Tommie Brown, D-Chattanooga, what his agency is doing to fight gangs in Tennessee. Gwyn responded that he doesn’t have enough agents or resources to start a gang unit, but noted that his proposal to ramp up anti-drug efforts would help.
“If we can do that, then that’s going to help with the gang problem,” he said. “Because a lot of gangs are into trafficking drugs.”

Raising Awareness of Sex Trafficking

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) — Tennessee’s top law enforcement officials attended a hearing in Nashville to make the public more aware of the problem of human sex trafficking in the state.
Safety Department Commissioner Bill Gibbons and Tennessee Bureau of Investigation Director Mark Gwyn heard from concerned Tennesseans and anti-trafficking groups on Tuesday.
A recent TBI report showed that over a two-year period there were about 4,000 known incidents of human trafficking in Tennessee. Gibbons said that number is probably worse because many incidents are unreported or hidden.
He said the main purpose of the hearing is to urge people to act if they see something suspicious.
Earlier this month, a three-day law enforcement seminar on human trafficking was held in Millington in West Tennessee.