MILLERSVILLE, Tenn. (WTVF) — Millersville police officers say they’re being told not to cooperate with an investigation into their assistant police chief, who is the center of a domestic assault investigation.
We first reported that in September, the Tennessee Bureau of Investigation was requested by the 19th Judicial District Attorney General’s Office to investigate an allegation of domestic assault against Millersville Assistant Police Chief Dustin Carr.
According to new city manager Steve Collie:
“At this time Assistant Police Chief Dustin Carr remains on duty pending the results of a TBI investigation into allegations of domestic abuse. We do not feel that it would be appropriate to comment any further on an active and ongoing investigation. I would refer you to the TBI for information on this case. If the TBI determines that any wrongdoing has occurred, the City of Millersville will take swift and appropriate action.”
Since our initial report, at least four Millersville officers have either left the department, retired or have been fired according to our source. Many of whom reached out to share more about what they say was a toxic work environment.
One officer agreed to speak with us on camera, as long as we concealed his identity. He says at first he worried over losing his job and any jobs in the future, but now he worries that by revealing his identity, he could put his family’s lives in jeopardy.
“I’ve got to protect myself and my family in the end, but to answer your question. It’s out of fear,” the source said.
Over what would be the next several weeks, this source says he watched Police Chief Mark Palmer on several occasions, question officers on what they told TBI about Carr.
This source began recording every encounter with Palmer and says several other officers did as well. In one recording, we’re told the man speaking is Palmer.
You can hear the man say, “this has the potential to be one hellaciously, bad mark on our department. Right or wrong, innocent or guilty, it doesn’t matter.”
In the same recording, the man can be heard asking why officers were so willing to speak up about what he considered a personal matter for Carr.
"What’s your motivation behind that? Is your motivation behind that because someone did something they shouldn’t have or what’s your motivation because guess what? That situation really isn’t none of you’re f**king business. It belongs between the two people that were involved in it," the man said.
When we spoke to the source he says meetings like these happened several times since September. Officers tell us they began feeling as if they were the ones being interrogated and not just by Palmer.
With Carr still working his normal shift, our source says Carr has grilled officers on what they’ve shared with TBI.
“Dustin the assistant chief was nose to nose, just about screaming in my face, demanding that I tell him and I told him, I’m not telling you nothing,” the source said.
Our source says it was Carr’s now ex-wife who approached officers in the first place, asking for advice on how she could press charges against an officer.
“She took photos of it and sent those photos to an officer and that officer reported it to a supervisor,” the source said.
The now former Millersville city manager Holly Murphy explained in an email back in September, that the city has no policy to place officers on leave when under investigation.
“Their integrity has already been compromised. They’re going on like nothing has happened and this needs to be addressed. This needs to be out there,” the source said.
We’ve sent multiple emails and placed numerous calls to chief Palmer’s office, mayor Tim Lassiter’s office and Dustin Carr. They’ve not responded to our calls or emails.