JACKSBORO, TN (WLAF) – The attorney representing La Follette City Council Member Ann Thompson appeared in court this morning on behalf of her client. Kristie Anderson entered a not guilty plea in Campbell County Criminal Court for Thompson who was arraigned today.
Thompson turned herself in at the Campbell County Jail earlier this month following the unsealing of an indictment.
She is charged with 34 counts of wiretapping and electronic surveillance and two counts of official misconduct after a Campbell County Grand Jury returned indictments charging Thompson. She was booked and released on the morning of October 3, 2019, after posting a $20,000 bond. The 58-year-old council member was arrested following a lengthy investigation by the TBI centering around the placement of a hidden tape recorder under a conference table in the city council chambers. The investigation revealed Thompson had been the one to place the recorder under the table.
Thompson, who has served multiple terms on the council and was the top vote getter in the most recent election, has been an outspoken critic of fellow council members, the mayor and city administrator.
In February, LaFollette City officials were hosting a weekly prayer group when the device was discovered after it fell from the bottom of the table.
The recorder appeared to have been secured with Velcro on the underside of a conference table located in the city council chambers, coming loose when the table was bumped by a prayer participant as they stood, according to a source that spoke to WLAF on the condition of anonymity.
When the cigarette lighter shaped device was discovered to be a recording device, LaFollette City Administrator Jimmy Jeffries notified the Tennessee Bureau of Investigation, according to the source.
The investigation has been ongoing since. At a May city council meeting, officials questioned the status of the investigation. At that time, Thompson, who was the last to be interviewed, said “scheduling problems” had delayed her interview with the TBI.
Under Tennessee law, official misconduct is a Class E Felony. In the event, Thompson is either convicted of, or pleads to the felony, she would have to resign her seat on the council.
Thompson is due back in court on Nov. 12. (WLAF NEWS PUBLISHED – 10/14/2019-9:30AM)
2 Replies to “Thompson’s attorney enters not guilty plea”
I have an issue with the 34 counts charged. There was NOT 34 recording devices. The person that placed the recorder committed only one act of placement…the recorder made ALL the decisions from that point onwards. This overkill crap prosecutors use these days is nothing but attempted tyranny. I cannot understand why there was not a motion to dismiss 33 of the charges. BUT then the legal profession is no longer about justice but tyranny. So there were charges issued even if the recorder was activated by a buzzing fly or a dog’s bark. The people in charge of the legal profession are going from the sublime to the ridiculous.
No, Jerry.. it means there was 34 recordings on the device, meaning that 34 different conversations was reported.
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