Judge Williams, Councilman Pierce Lash Corker On 911

Praise Police Administration Of Chief Jimmie Dotson

Saturday, April 1, 2006
Walter Williams
Walter Williams

City Councilman Leamon Pierce and former City Judge Walter Williams defended former Police Chief Jimmie Dotson and lambasted former Mayor Bob Corker on the 911 calls issue.

Attorney Williams said Chief Dotson asked for additional workers for 911, but the Corker administration did not supply them. The 911 program is now being criticized for missing thousands of calls.

Councilman Pierce said after Bob Corker became mayor "his sole purpose was to run Jimmie Dotson out of town."

He charged that former Mayor Corker, who is now running for the U.S. Senate, "tried to micromanage the police department." He said after Chief Dotson finally departed, "Corker set the whole next administration up. He chose the deputy chief and the whole staff" for incoming Chief Steve Parks.

Attorney Williams said, "I resent the remark by Todd Womack (of the Corker staff) that Chief Dotson did not have control of the department. I resent that they try to blame this on Chief Dotson."

He said Chief Dotson "took the police department to new heights. For the first time ever, they were accredited."

He added, "I know for a fact that Chief Dotson got the 911 calls down below three percent being dropped."

Councilman Pierce said of Chief Dotson, "I think he did a great job. Chief Parks walked into a department that was much strengthened over what it was - with a high level of professionalism."

He said the aim under the Dotson administration was to take the politics out of the police department. He was an appointee of former Mayor Jon Kinsey.

Attorney Williams said of former Mayor Corker, "I didn't find him to be a man of his word. He told me a lie, and I'll never forget it. I'll take him on any day of the week."

He said he referred to when he had decided to step down as judge. He said Mayor Corker asked for his choice for his successor and indicated that would be his selection.

But he said Mayor Corker "decided to go with this Blue Ribbon Committee - all that kind of foolishness. He didn't need a Blue Ribbon Committee to do anything."

He said afterwards, "I had no confidence in him whatsover. Obviously, I'm not supporting him for the U.S. Senate. I wouldn't dare cast a vote for him. I've shared my thoughts with others across the state."

Councilman Pierce said Bob Corker "basically used the mayor's office as a stepping stone to run for the U.S. Senate." He said in his last year "he neglected the city because he was out campaigning for the Senate."

He said the mayor's seat "was bought and paid for. The power structure raised $700,000 and bought it for Bob Corker. It was a planned thing."

Councilman Pierce said Mr. Womack "basically was the mayor at the end of the term. The other mayors we have had have served until the end of their terms."

On the replacement for Judge Williams, Councilman Pierce said the choice of the judge initially had five votes on the City Council until Mayor Corker stepped in with the Blue Ribbon Committee.

Attorney Williams said that after the council approved the choice of the Blue Ribbon Committee, it was later found that "the city had lost over a million dollars in revenue. The Corker staff was wondering then if they should have gone with my choice."

Attorney Williams said he also tangled with the former mayor "when I found out he had talked down to Daphne Sloan, executive director of the Westside Development Corporation in front of his staff and her staff. He literally dressed her down.

"When I found out what happened, I went the very next day and I lit into him. I told him I would not allow him to dress down a woman like that."

Attorney Williams said they also sparred when he said Mayor Corker purposely left the Westside section out of the Renewal Community zone.

He said he went to the City Council and got the council to delay action on the issue. He said Mayor Corker told his staff, "How dare Walter Williams challenge me?"

Attorney Williams said, "The mayor was not going to tell me what to do. I could do any d--- thing I please.

"A lot of people are afraid of Bob Corker. I was not afraid of Bob Corker."

Leamon Pierce
Leamon Pierce

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