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Home News Region/State State details allegations of wrongdoing by LaFollette mayor

State details allegations of wrongdoing by LaFollette mayor

LAFOLLETTE — The TN Comptroller’s Office has released the results of an investigation that resulted in the indictment of LaFollette Mayor Michael Ray Stanfield last September.

Stanfield, who was arrested following the grand jury indictment last year, is accused by the Comptroller’s Office and the Tennessee Bureau of Investigation of misusing “city personnel and equipment throughout his tenure.”

Stanfield has served as LaFollette’s mayor since 2008.

In the report released Monday morning, the Comptroller’s Office said that “numerous witnesses” told investigators that the mayor had used the city’s Public Works Department to repair non city-owned equipment like lawnmowers and chainsaws. Some of those repairs were done using city time and equipment.

According to the report, Stanfield acknowledged that he ran a side business repairing small engines that was unrelated to his position as mayor.

A Campbell County grand jury indicted Stanfield on Sept. 2 of seven counts of official misconduct, one count of retaliation for reporting to the Comptroller, and one count of misrepresenting information to the State Auditor.

Additionally, the report released Monday states that the City of LaFollette paved a former councilman’s private driveway in 2018. The former councilman was not named, but the report indicated that he has since voluntarily reimbursed the city for the cost of paving.

“It’s important that city officials understand what’s proper and take steps to prevent misuse of city employees or equipment,” said Comptroller Jason Mumpower. “In this case, the former Public Works Department management knew about the mayor’s actions and allowed it to take place. All officials must understand their responsibility to Tennessee taxpayers and provide the proper oversight.”

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The Comptroller’s report indicated that, as of Monday, the City of LaFollette has not taken any action to correct the deficiencies that were noted during the investigation.

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Independent Herald
Contact the Independent Herald at newsroom@ihoneida.com. Follow us on Twitter, @indherald.
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