Rutherford County chief deputy fired by Arnold - WSMV Channel 4

Rutherford County chief deputy fired by Arnold

Posted: Updated: Oct 02, 2015 12:54 PM
Virgil Gammon was fired on Friday as deputy chief of the Rutherford County Sheriff's Office. Virgil Gammon was fired on Friday as deputy chief of the Rutherford County Sheriff's Office.
Rutherford County Sheriff Robert Arnold Rutherford County Sheriff Robert Arnold
MURFREESBORO, TN (WSMV) -

A deputy with nearly 40 years in law enforcement was escorted off the job on Friday.

Virgil Gammon was third in command under Rutherford County Sheriff Robert Arnold, the sheriff who is under federal investigation for conflicts of interest.

Gammon had never criticized his boss in public, but sources say Gammon made it clear he did not approve of what was going on at the sheriff's department.

It all started with the Channel 4 I-Team's investigation into e-cigarettes.

Channel 4 found Arnold's aunt and uncle owned a Georgia-based e-cigarette company that was doing business with the Rutherford County jail.

The sheriff's wife worked part time for the company, and one of the founding members of the company, Deputy Joe Russell, works directly for the sheriff.

Then the I-Team found more no-bid contracts, including the one that resulted in $20,000 worth of Tasers coming to the jail from a commissary contractor. 

There were others, for garment bags and jail tablets, that had never been approved through the county's purchasing process.

Gammon never publicly criticized his boss, but sources say Gammon and other sheriff's department employees had recently testified under subpoena before a federal grand jury. Indictments, our sources say, could come before the end of the year. 

Gammon had been in the Rutherford County Sheriff's Department for 38 years. He joined the Rutherford County Sheriff’s Office in 1977 as a patrol officer and worked as Chief Deputy for Truman Jones, the previous sheriff Arnold defeated in 2010. Arnold retained Gammon as a chief deputy.

Gammon declined to be interviewed on Friday but said on the phone, "I love the department, I love everybody down there, and I'm not going to bash Robert, I'm going to take the high road. This is between Robert and I, and it will all come out in time."

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