Whitwell police chief charged with theft, misconduct

WHITWELL, Tenn. (AP) – The police chief of a small southeastern Tennessee city has been indicted on multiple charges including tampering with evidence, theft of property and official misconduct.

Media outlets report that 46-year-old Whitwell Police Chief James Rodney Easterly was indicted Thursday.

The Tennessee Bureau of Investigation says in a statement that the indictments come after a joint investigation by TBI special agents and the Marion County Sheriff’s Office. The statement says 12th District Attorney General Michael Taylor requested the investigation of complaints that Easterly was connected to theft, controlled substance violations and fraudulent receipt of food assistance within Marion County.

The TBI says agents found evidence that implicated Easterly in those and other charges.

Further information hasn’t been released. It’s unclear if Easterly has an attorney.