Sun, Apr 23, 2017

FBI, TBI investigating Fentress County Sheriff

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The FBI and TBI went into the Fentress County sheriff's office and jail Tuesday morning. About 20 agents were seizing items for hours. Agents came out with plenty of items, including paper records and computer files.

Agents then brought it out to the mobile command center for processing. At the same time, other agents were spread all over the County conducting interviews and seizing evidence.

What was the target of the investigation? Well, that's a secret, for now. Who was the target? That's not so secret.

Inside the District Attorney's office, agents were interviewing Sheriff Cravens. Just outside the office, the sheriff's confiscated vehicle was going to be carried back to Nashville for processing.

Cravens is a lifetime Fentress County resident. He grew up in Clarkrange, graduated high school and moved quickly into law enforcement.

Cravens was elected Fentress County Sheriff in 2006 and lasted one term. Then he came back and ran successfully again in 2014.

Cravens ran on a platform of an "officer in every school, open door policy," and treating all people with dignity.

Right now, the FBI will only say they are investigating allegations of impropriety.

Meanwhile, some residents say this is a long time coming.

"This is a good day for a lot of people in this County," Jack Baker Sr. said. "I thought there would be a whole bunch of people cheering, but I am cheering in my heart because nothing I hate worse than someone who abuses their authority or neglects their authority."

FBI and TBI took files, took computers, but they did not take the sheriff. He is not under arrest, and that puts the county executive in a tough position.

"Things may change by the hour, but at this point in time nothing has changed," County Executive J. Michael Cross said. "I am going to sit down with the county attorney and talk about our options. We want to be cautious. We want to be prudent not overreact we are concerned deeply concerned, and will help with the investigation any way we can."

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