(NASHVILLE) - Brown County Sheriff Rick Followell wanted to fire a deputy he accused of using excessive force and disobeying orders to take a lie-detector test about the incident, but merit board members instead put a letter of reprimand in the deputy's personnel file for one year and placed him on probation for six months.
The five-member sheriff merit board announced the decision Thurday morning after deliberating over a day's worth of testimony in a disciplinary hearing against a seven-year deputy.
They determined that Deputy William Southerland was guilty of disobeying the sheriff's orders, but innocent of using excessive force and a dozen other administrative charges, including discrediting the sheriff's department.
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