By Steve Hunley

Politics in the KPD?

The Knoxville News Sentinel has filled what pages it has on coverage of Nzinga Amani, formerly known as David Hayes.  Amani was found guilty by a Knox County jury of resisting arrest.  The jury could not reach a verdict on a charge that Amani had assaulted an officer.  At the heart of the issue is a warrant taken out by the police against Amani for having allegedly blocked a squad car outside of headquarters.  Months later, Knox County deputies arrested Amani as he left a meeting in the City-County Building on that same warrant.  The Sentinel likes to reiterate Mayor Indya Kincannon had asked the police to stay away from an event that was about the city’s search for a new police chief.

The very notion the mayor of a city could ask law enforcement officers to stay away from a public event and not arrest someone with an outstanding warrant is ridiculous.  City official Erin Gill called it a “safe space” at the time, before her own part in the tale was publicly revealed.  Without law enforcement, no “safe space” is truly safe.

During the recent trial, testimony revealed a KPD lieutenant had told deputies Nzinga would be at the meeting and there was an outstanding warrant for his arrest.  That same testimony also revealed a city official from the mayor’s office had asked the sheriff’s deputies to wait until the meeting was over to arrest Amani.  According to the testimony, that official was Erin Gill.

The Sentinel breathlessly reported that Amani’s arrest “sent shockwaves through the community.”  No, it did not.  The timing of the arrest is going to be questioned, but the more interesting question is why was there no attempt by the KPD to arrest Amani with the outstanding warrant?  The warrant, having been taken out by the KPD as I understand it, why was it not executed by the KPD?  Why was the arrest not made at Amani’s home by the KPD?  Why was someone who was a candidate for public office flitting from here to there without any attempt to serve the warrant?  Naturally, a candidate for office is going to be at any number of public events, but there was no effort on the part of KPD to make an arrest.  Why?  Why was it necessary for a KPD lieutenant to tip off the sheriff’s department to make the arrest?  Why wait months to serve it?

In this country no one should be above the law.  “Civil disobedience” should not and does not give someone license for breaking the law, nor does it entitle one to be free from arrest for having broken the law.  One’s rights end where other folks’ rights begin.

Not only was the City of Knoxville’s process for hiring a new police chief anything but transparent, it appears the process of the mayor hiring the police chief has infected the KPD with politics.  How else can anyone possibly explain why the KPD filed an arrest warrant and waited for months before tipping off the Sheriff’s Department to serve it?  Evidently the KPD were afraid to do it themselves.

Sanctuary City Hypocrites

What goes around, comes around.  Like most cliches, it is a cliché for a reason.  Eric Adams, mayor of New York City, is squalling about the effect of illegal aliens being shipped to NYC.  Governor Greg Abbott of Texas has been routinely shipping busloads of the illegal aliens to NYC, which has caused the Big Apple a multitude of problems, the very same kinds of problems faced by the states sitting on the border with Mexico, all of which are a result of the Biden administration’s open borders policy.  When the illegal aliens are transported outside of Florida, Texas and other places by their governors to those states and cities that have proudly labeled themselves “sanctuary cities” or states, the reality has proven to be not so much.  Apparently many “blue” cities and states who have so proudly pinned the designation of a “sanctuary” city or state meant it more in theory than reality.

Adams is complaining about the costs associated with the housing, feeding and care of the hundreds of thousands of people flooding across the border who are now in his own city.  Eric Adams has cried it will bankrupt New York City.  Those are the same arguments made by the mayors of cities all along the border, as well as the governors of the border states.  Nobody seemed to care when the complaints came from Republican officials, but Adams is a Democrat.  At the same time, the governor of Massachusetts, a Democrat, recently declared a state of emergency for the same reasons.

Mayor Adams wasn’t too concerned about it when the problem was more or less confined to the states sitting on the Mexican border.  It only became a bigger issue when the illegal aliens hit New York City.  Adams called Governor Abbott a “madman,” but hasn’t quite pointed his accusing finger where it truly belongs: to the old man sitting in the White House and the open border.

Congratulations Justice Tarwater

Dwight Tarwater has long been one of the most esteemed members of the Knoxville Bar Association.  Tarwater has been recognized as a truly outstanding attorney, which is why Governor Bill Lee appointed him to serve on Tennessee’s State Supreme Court.  Tarwater has been sworn in as a Justice of the state Supreme Court.  Dwight Tarwater served previously as counsel to Governor Bill Haslam.  Congratulations to Justice Tarwater, who should be a great addition to the court.