In a surprising twist, Cherokee Park Manager/Constable Paul King pled guilty to a reduced charge of theft under $500 on Friday, November 21, in Hamblen County Criminal Court. He was ordered to pay $375 in restitution to Albert Walker, victim of the theft. He was also sentenced to 10 days in jail.
King and his boss, Cherokee Park Director Frank Parker, were both indicted for theft over $500 in May 2008 for taking $750 from Albert Walker in order to get Walker's car out of the sheriff's impound lot when both of them knew--but did not tell Walker--that there was no charge to get the car out.
In addition, Parker was charged with felony official misconduct because he used his official position as a county commissioner in order to get sheriff's department personnel to release Walker's car into his (Parker's) custody.
Frank Parker applied for and was granted pre-trial diversion on both charges. A little slap on the wrist, a little restitution, and Frank is back at Cherokee Park drawing that nice county paycheck and benefits.
On Page 5 of King's Initial Application for Pre-Trial, Diversion (above left), King stated that the theft charge was his first offense and that he had never previously been "detained...arrested...or summoned into court as a defendant...."
A TBI pre-trial diversion report (above right) gave King a pass and indicated that the TBI database did NOT have a record of any prior conviction or expungement for King.
So what happened? It would appear that someone knew about and came forward with additional information about King's prior record and expungement---information that for some reason wasn't in the TBI database. That additional information apparently de-railed King's diversion express.