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CROSSVILLE CITY COUNCILMAN FILES ETHICS CHARGES AGAINST FELLOW COUNCIL MEMBER, INTERIM CITY MANAGER

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CROSSVILLE CITY COUNCILMAN FILES ETHICS CHARGES AGAINST FELLOW COUNCIL MEMBER, CITY MANAGER

A member of the Crossville City Council has submitted a list of 13 ethics violation charges to the city attorney for his opinion and for follow-up action. The charges come from Council Member Pete Souza and are mostly accusatory against fellow-Council Member Jesse Kerley, his father Jerry Kerley, who is a city employee, and interim City Manager Steve Hill. According to City Attorney William Ridely, 2 of the complaints cannot be considered because of a pending criminal matter. The matter concerns an assault charge that Souza has filed against Kerley which claims that he and his father Jerry trapped and assaulted him at City Hall on June 2nd of this year. The incident was taped on video surveillance equipment which, Souza goes on to say, was edited down by Kerley, in the presence of Mr. Hill so that a less aggressive version could be shown to police. The violations also charge Kerley with bullying former police chief Rod Shoap and former city manager David Rutherford, and using police procedure in an improper way. Kerley told 1057 News that he has not seen the ethics violations and that he does not care about Souza’s attacks. Charges have also been leveled at Steve Hill concerning alleged mis-appropriation of items while he was the city’s parks and recreation director. Ridley’s response to the charges was that since he represents the Council as a whole, he feels that a conflict of interest has been created that would not allow him to investigate the complaints or make any recommendations to the council as to their validity or merit. He has suggested that the council hold a special-called meeting in order to address the complaints separately. At the time of this report, a meeting had not been scheduled.


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