Ex-police chief, detective eyeing Rockwood jobs

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By Cindy Simpson

Some familiar Roane County faces may be taking spots in Rockwood Police Department.

Roane County Sheriff Office Detective John Mayes is the lone candidate in the running for deputy chief, and former Harriman Police Chief Randy Heidle is one of six candidates that have been interviewed for a patrolman position.

“We have not hired anybody yet. It will be brought up at the Council meeting on the 24th,” said Chief Bill Stinnett.

Stinnett said they just finished up the interview process for the patrolman position with an interview board.

“They have not yet made the final decision. We did six interviews. Randy is one of the six,” said Stinnett.

Heidle retired from Harriman after a long career, after allegations from employees of misconduct.

A letter from the state Comptroller of the Treasury to City Manager Kevin Helms said employee interviews “revealed an environment in which department management tolerated and even ordered abuse related to using department employees and property for personal purposes.”

The Comptroller’s Office reported employees described instances in which they were asked to perform Heidle’s personal errands while on city time.

Prior to being appointed as chief, Heidle was a successful investigator for a number of years with the department.

Stinnett said Mayes, who is a Rockwood native and a part-time on call fireman for the Rockwood Fire Department, is the only person to apply for deputy chief.

“He’s the only applicant. John is a good officer. He worked here about 14 years ago. I believe he did start in Rockwood,” said Stinnett.