GBI probe of police/marshal incident nearing an end

mowen@ledger-enquirer.comDecember 5, 2013 

A Georgia Bureau of Investigation probe into an October incident involving a Muscogee County deputy marshal and a Columbus Police officer is in its final stages, according to GBI Special Agent in Charge Wayne Smith.

“We have a few more steps to take care of, a few more interviews to conduct,” Smith said Wednesday. “We’ve been discussing the possibility of a reenactment, so we’ll understand exactly what happened.”

In late October, Deputy Marshal Alicia Davenport was the first to respond to a traffic accident at Forest Road and Wellborn Drive. Shortly after, CPD motor squad Officer Doug Dunlap also responded and began taking information from drivers and witnesses.

Davenport then decided to leave and Dunlap went toward her patrol car to get any information she might have gotten, but Davenport drove away rapidly, making contact with Dunlap, according to a police department incident report.

“Officer Dunlap had to jump out of the way of her patrol vehicle. In doing so, Officer Dunlap stated that the right front bumper of the Marshal’s Department vehicle bumped/brushed against his right leg two inches above the knee,” the report stated.

Marshal Greg Countryman declined to comment specifically on the incident, citing the GBI investigation.

“The only thing that I can say is that we’re taking this very seriously and we’re going to have to see how things play out,” Countryman said. “But I am not going to tolerate certain actions from my deputies. I’m going to hold them to a higher standard.”

Countryman would not say whether he had disciplined Davenport, but said, “Right now she’s appealing our decision that we made.”

A request for city records of any disciplinary action against Davenport was referred to the city attorney’s office, which declined to release them because, “the disciplinary action has not been concluded or terminated.”

Neither Dunlap nor Davenport has responded to requests for comment.

Smith said that when the GBI investigation is complete, he will turn over the results to the district attorney’s office.

“Then they’ll make the decision on how to go forward,” White said. “If they think there’s sufficient evidence of a criminal act and they want an arrest, we’ll make the arrest.”

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