The Tennessean’s follow up story to the Nashville Scene reporter being arrested for trespass had an interesting side story. The Tennessean complained in the story about not getting a copy of the complaint after multiple requests by the paper. It is standard procedure that no information is released in Nashville Davidson County until the warrant or indictment is served.
Attorneys for the accused cannot even get a copy of the arrest warrant. Inside the four corners of the arrest warrant, the affidavit of complaint is listed. It is a short summary of the evidence which supports the probable cause for the arrest. One cannot get a copy under the guidelines established by the booking office. Think you have an arrest warrant against you ? You can’t just call in and check. The folks at the booking office want you to come on down to check in person. If you have an active warrant, surprise you are now under arrest. The Tennessean complains they did not get a copy after requests are made. Sorry but you are not entitled to get a copy at this juncture.
Here is the problem. according to the article, the Davidson County Sheriff’s office released a copy of the complaint to the newspaper. The reporter, Carrie Wade Gervin was not served with the criminal citation until the next morning.
It was a clear violation of long established policy by the Davidson County Sheriff’s Office. No information is provided on cases where the accused has not been served with process. Was the policy violated solely for the Tennessean ?