Detective charged with perjury wants prosecutor removed

CHATTANOOGA, Tenn. (AP) – A Tennessee detective charged with perjuring himself in a rape case involving high school basketball players is asking a judge to remove the prosecutor.

The request is part of a hostile back-and-forth between authorities where the students live and where the alleged rape happened.

Gatlinburg Det. Rodney Burns has charged a group of Ooltewah High School players with one count of rape, but Hamilton County prosecutor Neal Pinkston says it should be four.

Pinkston has charged Burns with perjury; Burns is claiming defamation.

According to the Chattanooga Times Free Press (, Burns’ attorneys argued Tuesday that the $300,000 defamation suit creates a conflict of interest for Pinkston.

Pinkston said the suit is a tactic to get him to drop charges against Burns.

The judge said he needs time to rule.