Police Hearing

Published 12:00 am Friday, January 29, 2010

Police officer, back at job, faces case in circuit court

By Billy Davis

A suspended Batesville police officer, who returned to work this week, now faces a hearing in Panola County Circuit Court.

An affidavit, which names police officer Jamie Tedford, reached the office of County Attorney C. Gaines Baker on Tuesday, Baker confirmed when reached by The Panolian.

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A copy of the affidavit, obtained by the newspaper, alleges that Tedford made a phone call on January 6 to a sheriff’s investigator in which he allegedly threatened to kill a third party.

The affidavit was signed in justice court January 22 by Mary Carothers of Batesville.  

Per state law, affidavits filed against police officers, and others in similar public roles, are forwarded to the county attorney’s office. From there they are presented to circuit court for review, Baker said.

The next court procedure, before an arrest warrant can be issued, is a probable cause hearing before a circuit judge, he said.  

Batesville aldermen, convening Monday for a called meeting, voted unanimously during an executive session to reinstate Tedford, 34, who had been suspended with pay by aldermen during an executive session late in their Jan. 19 meeting.

The city board was expected to take up the matter February 2, the date of it first regular board meeting, after a complaint was filed against Tedford. Details of the complaint were not made public.

Tedford oversees the police department’s Special Operations unit, which operates as a drug task force within the city. He has worked for the police department since 1997.

Tedford is also a well-known figure in the police department after twice seeking election for sheriff.

Jones said he was grateful that aldermen moved quickly to investigate the matter and return Tedford to his job.

Tedford has worked alongside state and federal government law enforcement agencies through a drug interdiction program.

“Jamie’s got experience working with the Miss. Bureau of Narcotics, the DEA, and the U.S. Marshals,” the chief said. “He’s an asset to us, and to the city, and he needed to get back to work.”

“I want you to include that,” Jones continued. “If people want to read about the bad, they need to read about the good, too.”

Jones said he is aware of the justice court affidavit.