An administrative law judge has ruled that two Chattanooga police officers fired for using excessive force on federal inmate Adam Tatum during a call to a Salvation Army halfway house last summer should get their jobs back.
“After consideration of the testimony and evidence presented, the arguments of counsel, and the entire record in this matter, it is determined that Chattanooga did not show by a preponderance of the evidence that termination of the Grievants was appropriate. Accordingly, the Grievants are hereby reinstated to their positions with the Chattanooga Police Department,” writes Administrative Judge Kim Summers in a 30-page initial order.
Summers ordered that former Officers Sean Emmer and Adam Cooley be given full back pay, seniority and benefits.
Responding to the ruling, Mayor Andy Berke said, “I am extremely disappointed by the judge’s opinion today. Any kind of misconduct is unacceptable and will not be tolerated in the Chattanooga Police Department. We are currently reviewing the opinion and discussing our options with the city attorney.”
For more, read tomorrow's Times Free Press.