Council meeting with police chief

Friday, September 21, 2007

Lewisburg's City Council discussion with Police Chief Alexander about a state investigation into how an underage drinking case was handled should be in public on Tuesday, according to three city officials.

Meanwhile, administrative leave with pay has been continued for Chief Alexander who's taken time off to consult with his attorney, Walter Bussart, who was unavailable for comment Thursday. Alexander refused to speak during last week's council meeting.

The Tennessee Bureau of Investigation has an agent examining records and related statements with regard to city police communication and decisions on whether a teenage resident should be released when suspected of drinking beer in a city park.

The alleged drinker's arrest is less the issue as whether there was obstruction of justice by a superior officer who may or may not have directed a street patrol officer to take the young man home to his parents, officials have explained. Officers at the scene have discretion over arrest decisions.

City council agreed on Sept. 11 to meet in private for an attorney-client session to discuss the situation and other matters as raised by Councilwoman Quinn Brandon. That private meeting was to include Alexander and his attorney. However, if people other than the attorney, council and city management join the session, it is no longer an attorney-client meeting for privileged communications.