Yesterday afternoon, I received a text message from a friend that said in part, "Hang in there. Don't let them destroy all the good that you have done for the Madison County Sheriff's Office and the community."

    I have been a law enforcement officer for the past 42 years, spending the last 36 years here in Madison County. I began my employment in 1977 with the Madison County Sheriff's Office as a deputy. In 1982, I was promoted to sergeant in the patrol division and later in the same year was reassigned to the Criminal Investigations Division.

    I was first elected to the office of sheriff in Madison County in 1994, and reelected again unopposed in 1998. I was reelected in 2002. In 2002, I was elected by my peers to serve as the President of the TN Sheriffs' Association. Reelected again in 2006 and in 2010 was elected again for a  5th term.

    Under my leadership we changed the image of the sheriff's office in a positive way:

    • In 1998, built the J. Alexander Leech Criminal Justice Complex after over 20 years of debating the proposal of building a new jail;

    • Hiring over 100 officers to work the jail in corrections;

    • Increased court security;

    • Assigned the first School Resource Officer (SRO) to work within the school system;

    • Increased the staffing of the Criminal Investigations Division by creating a violent crimes unit and property crimes unit in that division;

    • Increased the Metro Narcotics Unit; and

    • Increased the Patrol Division.

    I admit, I made some bad personal decisions, and they were just that, personal.

    Several weeks ago, my family and I made the decision that I would not seek a 6th
    aggressively fight these alleged charges.

    Comments, Attorney Mark Donahoe.

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