A federal investigation of steroid use among law enforcement officers including Metro Police has spread to Murfreesboro, with a city officer there being decommissioned as part of the probe.
In addition, a law enforcement source with knowledge of the investigation said it would likely spread to involve officers from other Middle Tennessee communities, including nearby Wilson County.
Murfreesboro Police Officer Phillip Hatcher was decommissioned Friday as part of the federal investigation, according to Officer Kyle Evans, spokesperson for the department.
A spokesperson for the Metro Nashville Police Department has confirmed Metro was involved with Hatcher’s case. Three Nashville police officers, Mike Evans, Danny Cage and Stephen Reece, were decommissioned late last month after officers arrested a man Feb. 19 for possession of steroids for resale.
“I can confirm that Metro detectives were among those who interviewed Murfreesboro Police employee Phillip Hatcher on Friday,” said Don Aaron, Metro Police spokesperson.
The federal Drug Enforcement Agency field office in Nashville is conducting the investigation into steroid use among law enforcement officials in Middle Tennessee. DEA Special Agent in Charge Harry Sommers confirmed an investigation was ongoing, but would not disclose how long the agency had been investigating steroid use among police officers in Middle Tennessee.
The arrest of Wilson County resident Scott Haines eventually led to the decommissioning of the three Metro officers, Aaron said, although he did not indicate the direct connection among the four, if any at all.
“As a result of the investigation that led to [Haines’] arrest in mid-February, information was received that potentially linked the three officers to steroid use,” Aaron said.
Haines was arrested after officers allegedly saw him conducting sales from his vehicle, according to police. They recovered 2,200 dosage units, which can be in liquid or tablet form, of anabolic steroids and $3,090 cash.
The following day, officers at Haines’ home in South Nashville found 500 additional dosage units of steroids and 300 grams of powder used to manufacture steroids.
One law enforcement source with knowledge of the investigation said it was likely officers living in Wilson County would next surface in the federal probe.
Although no officers have been decommissioned, steroid use allegations have also been swirling around the Tennessee Highway Patrol.
“We are investigating allegations against… two [officials] and that’s requiring that we do some testing to see whether there’s any truth to those allegations,” said Mike Browning, spokesperson for the state Department of Safety.
There is no official investigation currently, according to Browning, and he did not indicate any connection with the federal investigation that has touched Davidson and Rutherford counties.
The Murfreesboro and Metro Nashville Police Departments continue to investigate the alleged steroid usage, while the federal investigation is ongoing.
(Executive Editor Clint Brewer contributed to this story.)