Johnson City Press Tuesday, September 2, 2014
Regional & National

Trooper resigns after being disciplined

November 25th, 2013 1:59 pm by AP

Trooper resigns after being disciplined

After 29 years of service, Robert Moore retired from the Tennessee Highway Patrol on June 28. He was the trooper supervising sergeant over Dyer County, Tenn. He worked under five governors and eight THP district captains during his service to the citizens

NASHVILLE —
Records show a Tennessee Highway Patrol trooper has retired after being
disciplined for not allowing the state's only black female appellate
judge into the Supreme Court building.

The Tennessean reports the discipline memo from Department of
Safety and Homeland Security Commissioner Bill Gibbons says Trooper
Brent Gobbell was reprimanded and docked one day's pay due to the
incident. The paperwork said he turned away Court of Criminal Appeals
Judge Camille McMullen, who was trying to drop off paperwork for another
judge on June 14.

"Upon Judge McMullen presenting you with her
official judicial identification card, you refused to take it into your
possession and verify its authenticity. Instead, you told Judge
McMullen, 'Those are easy to come by.' You were implying that her
identification card could possibly be fraudulent without knowing what
kind of identification she was presenting," Gibbons wrote.

Gobbell allowed McMullen to give the paperwork to a clerk, who passed it along.

The
trooper later apologized by email, but records show he was disciplined
because his actions displayed "an utter disregard to proper procedures
regarding accepting proper procedures and allowing appropriate personnel
access to the Tennessee Supreme Court building."

Among the rules
and regulations that Gobbell's actions violated, according to the memo,
was a provision that says state employees "shall not express any
prejudice concerning race, religion, politics, national origin, life
style or similar personal characteristics."

Gobbell was suspended
for 15 days without pay in October 2009 and ordered to undergo diversity
training after he forwarded an email that declared "white pride" to
other state employees.

He later apologized for the email, saying it was sent by accident.

McMullen,
who became the first black woman appointed to the Court of Criminal
Appeals in 2008, had filed a complaint against Gobbell for refusing to
admit her into the building.

A department spokeswoman says Gobbell, who was hired in 1983, has retired since the incident took place.


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