Lambert Releases Audio Of Calls To Boyd That Led To Extortion Charge; Boyd Attorney Says Lambert "Should Be Held Accountable"

Monday, April 16, 2018
Brent Lambert at press conference
Brent Lambert at press conference

East Ridge Mayor Brent Lambert on Monday played audio of three calls that led to an extortion charge against County Commissioner Tim Boyd.

The calls were played to reporters at a press conference at the East Ridge Community Center beside City Hall.

The attorney for Commissioner Boyd, Lee Davis, called it "curious business" that Mayor Lambert would hold the press conference and release the tapes.

Both Boyd and Lambert are vying for the District 8 County Commission seat. 

Mayor Lambert said he decided to record the calls "because I wanted a witness" to the exchange.  He said no one had instructed him to make the recordings. 

He said Tennessee "is a one-way consent state" on recordings.

The mayor said the commissioner is "scared, desperate, delusional and a bully." He said Commissioner Boyd "lies repeatedly."

Mayor Lambert said he made the first call on Feb. 16 after getting a call the night before from an attorney saying that Commissioner Boyd had called saying he had some damaging information against Mayor Lambert.  He said the call was from Allen McCallie, who is associated with a lawyer for the Tennessee Valley Railroad Museum, where Mayor Lambert is CEO and president.

He said the calls were made to Commissioner Boyd on his job at a manufacturing plant in Calhoun, Ga. In the first call, Commissioner Boyd said the information had been provided to him by his political team.  He said, "It looks very suspicious and certainly unethical.  It is all documented.  It's not going to look good for you, Brent."

He added, "My political team says this is really bad."  Commissioner Boyd said on the tape that his team was pushing to make the information public, but he said he did not want to hurt Mayor Lambert, his family or the Railroad Museum.

Mayor Lambert, at the press conference, said the information apparently referred to him accepting large campaign donations from the developers of the Bass Pro Shop property at Exit 1 and him afterward paying off an old campaign debt.  He said there was nothing illegal or unethical about taking the money and paying off the prior debt.

On the tape, Mayor Lambert asked Commissioner Boyd, "What do you want me to do?"

Commissioner Boyd said, "What I prefer you to do is just drop out of the race and everything goes away."  He also said, "If you stay in the race, it's not going to be pretty.  It will go to every media outlet there is and there will be robo calls.  It will be no holds barred."

In a call on Feb. 20, Commissioner Boyd said, "I don't want to hurt you, Brent."  He said the Railroad Museum is "an icon" and he also did not want to harm it.  But he said the information his team had found showed he had acted "blatantly unethically."  He said, "It's not conjecture, Brent.  They showed me the documents."  He said one of his team members said the information was, "As juicy as it gets.  He can't wait to turn it loose."

Commissioner Boyd said in the tape that he did not want others to know, but that this would be his last term before he retires.  He said, "This is just a little County Commission job.  You're doing great things in East Ridge, Brent."

Mayor Lambert asked if he withdrew could the information still come out.  Commissioner Boyd said former state Rep. Ken Meyer had offered to take all the documents and turn them over to Mayor Lambert after he withdrew.

In a final call, Mayor Lambert said he had decided he did nothing wrong and he was going to stay in the race.

Mayor Lambert said he hopes the issue about the alleged threats is over and the campaign can get back to "the issues."

Attorney Davis said, "Political candidate Brent Lambert issued a press release Friday threatening Tim Boyd that he will release a secretly recorded conversation today in order to gain political advantage in an election. Mr. Lambert is committing the same act today that he complained of last week.

“If Mr. Lambert really believes he is the victim of a crime, as he claims to be, it is curious business for him to hold a press conference today to release evidence, as he announced he intends to do. As a political candidate, Lambert is holding a press conference today, he says, to release a conversation that he secretly recorded of a political opponent. Puzzlingly, Mr. Lambert initiated the call to Commissioner Tim Boyd for the purpose of recording him. This act by Mr. Lambert, followed by an indictment, and now followed by his announcement that he will release evidence in a pending criminal case, is a mockery of our legal system. Mr. Lambert and those individuals who are helping him with his threats against Commissioner Tim Boyd should be held accountable for their actions. 

“My law office will be representing Commissioner Tim Boyd in a court of law on Friday, and we will ask the court to set this matter for trial at the earliest possible opportunity so that we may do our part to seek justice on behalf of Commissioner Tim Boyd and to hold political candidate Brent Lambert accountable for his actions in this matter."

 



Top Chattanooga Salaries For 2018

Here are the top Chattanooga salaries for 2018: Bean, Russell J City Judge $176,364.00 Paty, Sherry B City Judge $176,364.00 Berke, Andrew L   Mayor $168,348.90 Hinton, Wadrick Allen City Attorney $154,564 Madison, Daisy W Administrator City Finance Officer $148,381 Roddy, David T Police Chief $144,460 Hill, Corinne M   Director ... (click for more)

Grand Jury No Bills And True Bills For July 11

Here are the No Bills and True Bills from the Hamilton County Grand Jury for July 11: No Bills: ADAMS, MATHEW RUSSELL W 37 M 0 1 GS 1715717 VANDALISM/MALICIOUS MISCHIEF HUNTER, ADAM F W 21 M 0 1 GS 1710492 RECKLESS ENDANGERMENT HUNTER, ADAM F W 21 M 0 2 GS 1710493 RECKLESS ENDANGERMENT STEWART, ANTHONY LEON B 22 M 0 1 GS 1711190 POSSESSION OF LEGEND DRUGS W/O ... (click for more)

Bill Lee Is Great For Tennessee

I had the opportunity to meet Bill and Maria Lee at the grand opening of his Chattanooga Campaign HQ. He delivered, what was by most accounts, a showstopper speech at the Statesman’s dinner in Nashville the night before. He and Maria should have been worn out, but if they were, they really showed very little sign of it. His energy level, for a guy that couldn’t have gotten more ... (click for more)

A Successful East Ridge Bake Sale

Saturday's event at the Camp Jordan Pavilion was nothing more than extraordinary, if not history making.  Alongside the threatening eminent domain letters the citizens of East Ridge received, a Union was formed amongst the East Ridge Police Department.  Coming to City Council the night of April 26, I had only one thing I was focused on: eminent domain.  ... (click for more)

English, Ex-East Hamilton Coach, Hired To Lead Whites Creek Boys' Hoops Team

Rodney English, former boys’ basketball coach at East Hamilton, recently was named to a similar job at Whites Creek High School in Nashville. The move was made public Monday when English’s name appeared on the official Whites Creek school directory that is annually submitted to the Tennessee Secondary School Athletic Association. The hiring of English at Whites Creek was also ... (click for more)

Vols' Nigel Warrior Named To Bednarik Award Watch List

Tennessee junior defensive back  Nigel Warrior  has been named to the 2018 Bednarik Award Watch List. Warrior is the first Vol to be named to the Bednarik Watch list since the defensive trio of Derek Barnett, Jalen Reeves-Maybin and Cameron Sutton were named to the Bednarik's preliminary list in 2016.   Warrior totaled 83 tackles with 3.5 tackles for loss ... (click for more)