Former police chief sues town, clerk claiming defamation

H. David Rodgers (Source: Lee Attaway)
H. David Rodgers (Source: Lee Attaway)
Adrienne Thompson (Source: Town of Chapin web site)
Adrienne Thompson (Source: Town of Chapin web site)

The former police chief of Chapin is suing the town and the town clerk, claiming breach of contract and defamation of his character.

"I'm being looked at as this criminal as this pedophile," said David Rodgers. "I don't know what folks are thinking."

The suit filed December 28 in Lexington County Common Pleas Court by Rodgers names Town Clerk Adrienne Thompson and the Town of Chapin.

Rodgers resigned in 2011. Rodgers said in his resignation letter that he was stepping down after learning he could be fired.

In the resignation letter, Rodgers said he and the town agreed not to make adverse comments about each other.

Rodgers served in the Chapin Police Department for ten years.

The suit claims Thompson gave poor performance reviews to other law enforcement agencies who were considering hiring Rodgers.  It claims they defamed Rodgers by "falsely claiming he preyed on young women, stole thousands of dollars from Chapin and engaged in other despicable and criminal activities."

"She's making this allegations about me and they are not true," said Rodgers.

"It's affected my wife," he said. "I have a 15 year old daughter. She's heard rumors. It's affected my whole family."

"H. David Rodgers honorably served the Town of Chapin with its police department for ten years," said his attorney, Ben Mabry.

"Certainly if a public official engaged in this type of conduct one would reasonably expect he would have been prosecuted to the hilt long ago," said Mabry. "This has not occurred because Mr. Rodgers has committed no crime."

Rodgers' suit claims he suffered from loss of future employment, loss of income, damage to his ability to earn income and damage to his reputation.

The suit also claims the Town of Chapin breached its contract with Rodgers by releasing negative information that was to stay confidential under the agreement.

"He came to me with this information and I said 'The only way to clear your name, since this stuff is out there, is to bring a lawsuit," said Mabry.

Chapin's Mayor, Stan Shealy, told WIS by phone the town has no comment.

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