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September 26, 2006
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Officials probing whether Tenn. officers lied about prior arrests

The Associated Press
, Tenn.- Tennessee officials are looking into whether police officers in at least two Fayette County towns lied about prior arrests when they were hired.

Brian Grisham is executive secretary of the Peace Officer Standards and Training (POST) Commission, the state agency that certifies police officers and maintains professional standards.

He says the investigation centers on the Gallaway and Piperton police departments but could expand to others.

Piperton police officer Robert Schmidt of Memphis was indicted this month by a federal grand jury on charges of having a felony conviction and possessing a firearm.

A Gallaway officer, John Wilkerson, was dismissed from POST training last week, for allegedly lying about not having a prior criminal arrest.

Grisham says he is investigating a similar complaint about Piperton Police Chief Carl Hendricks -- a former Gallaway police officer -- but he declined to elaborate.

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