CLEVELAND, Tenn. — The Bradley County Sheriff's Office has searched the business and home of Bradley County Commissioner Howard Thompson.
A woman who answered the first of two calls to Thompson's cell phone said he was not available. The second call was not answered.
According to District Attorney General Steve Bebb, the search grew out of a traffic stop by the 10th Judicial District Task Force.
Cleveland police and the sheriff's department were called to the scene and the unidentified motorist reportedly told officers he had stolen property in his vehicle and intended to sell it at the U.S. Highway 64 flea market owned by Thompson.
The investigation is continuing, Bebb said.
"We will sit down and discuss this when we have an opportunity,'' Bebb said.
Any evidence could go directly to the Bradley County grand jury, he said.
Sheriff's department spokesman Bob Gault could provide no more information Thursday afternoon.
"All I can say is that they did execute a search warrant,'' Gault said.
A man working the counter at the flea market Thursday would only say that Thompson and his wife were out Christmas shopping.
Thompson has been commissioner in the 4th District for many years. He is chairman of the commission's law enforcement committee and serves on the buildings and land, insurance and roads committees.
Randall Higgins covers news in Cleveland, Tenn., for the Times Free Press. He started work with the Chattanooga Times in 1977 and joined the staff of the Chattanooga Times Free Press when the Free Press and Times merged in 1999. Randall has covered Southeast Tennessee, Northwest Georgia and Alabama. He now covers Cleveland and Bradley County and the neighboring region. Randall is a Cleveland native. He has bachelor’s degree from Tennessee Technological University. His awards ...