published Sunday, December 8th, 2013

Video put chief at Cleveland love nest

Wes Snyder Retirement Letter
Wes Snyder Retirement Letter
Police report regarding Sharon Marr's storage Unit
Police report regarding Sharon Marr's storage Unit

Cleveland Police Chief Wes Snyder's sudden retirement Friday followed discovery of a surveillance tape showing him and a woman entering and leaving an apparent love nest in a rental warehouse on Old Tasso Road.

The Cleveland Police Department on Saturday released an incident report dated Dec. 4 in which officers recovered a video showing MainStreet Cleveland Executive Director Sharon Marr and a man entering and spending about 90 minutes in a rental warehouse unit.

Cleveland police spokeswoman Evie West confirmed that the man was identified as Snyder.

Officers admitted to the unit by the warehouse owner found a rug, blankets and pillows and a bottle of brandy, according to the police report.

Snyder and Marr could not be reached for comment Saturday.

Snyder submitted his retirement letter Friday and did not respond to emails seeking comment.

It's not clear from the Cleveland police incident report when the camera captured the two.

The owner of Rhodes Climate Controlled Storage at 3305 Old Tasso Road NE called police Wednesday. Reporting officer J. Prince said he spoke with the manager and owner, who showed him pictures and videos and gave "witness accounts of some unusual activity going on in one of the units."

Rhodes, the owner, whose first name wasn't listed in the report, told Prince he had noticed a "horrible smell" coming from one of the units a couple of weeks ago. He got a ladder and was looking over the tops of the unit walls, checking to see if anyone had left trash or decomposing material.

He noticed one unit that had an area rug, blankets and pillows, a folding chair and a plastic storage container. He told Prince the unit was rented by MainStreet Cleveland through Sharon Marr. MainStreet Cleveland is a nonprofit boosting revitalization and promotion of the downtown historic area, according to its website.

When Prince was there, Rhodes asked the officer to enter the unit with him. Prince called his superiors, Capt. David Bishop and Lt. Mark Gibson, who came to the warehouse.

The warehouse business was closed Saturday, and no one could be reached for comment.

They took photographs and watched the video and then relocked the unit, Prince wrote in the report.

Cleveland City Manager Janice Casteel on Friday would not confirm allegations that Snyder had been caught on video with a woman not his wife. Asked if he was retiring under threat of termination or whether she had asked for his resignation, she said no.

Snyder had 33 years at the Cleveland Police Department.

His retirement date is Jan. 5, his 10th anniversary as chief.

In his retirement letter to "Fellow Officers and Employees," Snyder said it was an honor and privilege to lead the department and commended them to "Remain steadfast to your goals and maintain a high degree of integrity."

Contact staff writer Judy Walton at jwalton@timesfreepress.com or 423-757-6416.

about Judy Walton...

Judy Walton has worked 25 years at the Chattanooga Times and the Times Free Press as an editor and reporter focusing on government coverage and investigations. At various times she has been an assistant metro editor, region reporter and editor, county government reporter, government-beat team leader, features editor and page designer. Originally from California, Walton was brought up in a military family and attended a dozen schools across the country. She earned a journalism degree ...

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