In a special called session of the Clarksville City Council, members voted 11 – 1 to approve severance agreements for Police Chief Mark Smith and Deputy Chief Bob Davis. Ward 2 Councilwoman Deanna McLaughlin cased the lone vote against the agreements, citing input from her constituents.
Before the vote Clarksville Mayor Johnnie Piper stated that he believed a leadership change among the two top police officers in the department would go a long way in healing the problems in the Clarksville police department. Deputy Chief Bob Davis who was scheduled to retire in June agreed to retire on February 1, 2007 along with Chief Mark Smith, but the city will continue to pay for any legal fees already associated with several discrimination law suits filed by members of the police department.Under the agreements, Smith will be paid a one-time payment of $75,000, and Davis will receive $15,642.
Several police officers present who have filed law suits when asked about the councils vote stated that they do not agree to pay a person to leave because if it was one of them who was being fired they would not be offered any type of severance pay. However all agreed that it is time for the community and for the police department to move forward in this matter.