April 24, 2009
News from the Chief
As many of you have heard, the first fundraising event for a soon to be created Nashville
Police Foundation is the Shoney’s 5K Family Fun Run on June 6 (the details of which are
included in this newsletter). I am sincerely humbled by the amazing generosity of Shoney’s and
its CEO, David Davoudpour, for supporting the men and women of our department. A
minimum of $20,000, and I hope much more, will go toward the foundation.
I have been talking about the formation of a Nashville Police Foundation for many
months with several of our city’s business and community leaders. I discussed this with Mayor
Dean shortly after his election and he has strongly endorsed the idea. The legal paperwork
officially creating the foundation is not yet complete, but is in the process of being finalized. I
can tell you that I anticipate a prominent Nashville attorney will be the first chairman of the
Nashville Police Foundation and that its funds will be managed by The Community Foundation
of Middle Tennessee.
The first priority of the Nashville Police Foundation will be to raise funds in the private
sector to offset, to the extent possible, the higher education expenses of officers working toward
completion of associate’s, bachelor’s or master’s degrees. The exact process for how that will
work is still being developed. I strongly believe that the pursuit of higher education degrees
will benefit police officers and their families for a lifetime. In addition, the higher educational
achievement of our officers will help in our continuing efforts to professionalize policing, as
well as enhancing our ability to provide the finest service we can to the broad community we
Our foundation will also assist in sending police employees to cutting edge training
programs, or, in some cases, bringing instructors from those programs to Nashville to conduct
the training here.
Police foundations exist in this fashion in many cities in the United States. I am
confident that our community will support the Nashville Police Foundation because of YOUR
professionalism and dedication to this city and its families.
You will be hearing more about the foundation in the coming weeks. In the meantime, I
ask that each of you consider supporting the Shoney’s 5K Family Fun Run on Saturday
morning, June 6.
The Inaugural Shoney’s 5K Family Fun Run
Shoney’s Corporation CEO David Davoudpour and Chief Ronal Serpas announced that
the inaugural Shoney’s 5K Family Fun Run benefiting the Metropolitan Police Department will
be held on Saturday morning, June 6, outside LP Field.
“Public safety and emergency preparedness are essential elements to Nashville’s
economic growth and community well being, and Shoney’s wants to be a leader in supporting
our men and women in blue,” Davoudpour said. “For several months, the Chief and I have
spoken frequently about the formation of a Nashville Police Foundation. Shoney’s is excited to
help spearhead fundraising for the planned foundation and will donate 100% of the proceeds
from the Family Fun Run toward that cause.”
Davoudpour said in addition to the minimum $20,000 donation to the planned foundation
as a result of this event, Shoney’s will also contribute an additional $5 per entrant in the
Shoney’s 5K Family Fun Run. He also announced that the top three male and female finishers
will receive cash prizes of $500, $250 and $100. Those top finishers will also receive Shoney’s
gift certificates in the same amounts.
Festivities on June 6 begin at 7 a.m. and are open to all ages. The Kids Fun Run will take
place alongside LP Field and begins at 7:45 a.m., followed by the 5K Run at 8:15 a.m.
Participants will enjoy either running or walking a scenic loop around historic downtown
Nashville, followed by an awards ceremony and fun festival.
To register for the Shoney’s 5K Family Fun Run, simply request a form at one of twenty-
six Nashville area Shoney’s restaurants or visit shoneys.com. All pre-registered race
participants will receive a one-of-a-kind T-shirt commemorating the event. The cost to
participate in the race is $20 until May 31; $25 from June 1 through June 5; and $30 on race
day. Kids, military and police are only $10.
Following the Fun Run, there will be a family-friendly festival and kid’s zone in Lot A in
front of LP Field. Activities will include a healthy eating and activity table staffed by
Vanderbilt Medical Center, talented balloon artists, giant inflatables and face painting. Each
child will receive a commemorative badge. Coca-Cola will provide complimentary beverages.
Announcing the inaugural Shoney’s 5K Family Fun Run are (l-r) Shoney’s Bear, FOP President Robert
Weaver, Chief Ronal Serpas, Shoney’s Chief Marketing Officer Hannibal Myers, Shoney’s CEO David
Davoudpour, and Mayor Karl Dean’s Chief of Staff Rita Roberts-Turner.
Annual Awards Ceremony
More than 65 citizens and police officers were honored Thursday afternoon during the
Metropolitan Police Department’s annual awards ceremony in the community room of the
The award recipients were recognized for heroism, bravery and outstanding acts
performed during 2008. Chief Serpas and Mayor Dean gave out plaques, certificates and
Here are just four examples of their tremendous efforts:
The Late Detective Diane Vaughn
Thirty-four years ago, Diane Vaughn was one of the Metro detectives who worked on the
investigation into the murder of Vanderbilt student Sarah Des Prez. Notes left in the 1975 case
file by Detective Vaughn, combined with tremendous scientific advancements over the years,
were of keen significance to Sergeant Pat Postiglione and Detective Bill Pridemore as they
began new work on the case in 2007.
Regrettably, Detective Vaughn died from cancer in 1994. Her sister, Debbie Sullivan,
traveled to Nashville to accept the award on her sister’s behalf.
Pictured (l-r) are Mayor Dean, Debbie Sullivan and Chief Serpas
Exemplary Service Award:
South Flex Sergeant Jason Beddoe and ATF Special Agents John Welch & Antonio Pittman
Outstanding investigative work led to the arrests of six young men charged in connection
with five separate armed robberies involving victims in apartment complex parking lots.
Sergeant Beddoe supervised Flex Units during weeks of surveillance and Special Agents
Welch and Pittman greatly assisted in the apprehension of these six armed and dangerous
Pictured (l-r) are Mayor Dean, ATF Specials Agents Antonio
Pittman and John Welch, Sgt. Beddoe and Chief Serpas
DUI Unit Officers Kevin Lovell, Wallace Taylor, Jessie Loy, and Shawn Taylor
Despite being on dinner break, these four officers alertly spotted a robbery in progress at
a nearby restaurant.
As they responded without hesitation, the 19-year-old suspect aimed his weapon at them
and pulled the trigger.
Fortunately, the gun malfunctioned and did not fire. Moments later this dangerous
robbery suspect was taken into custody. The teenager was charged with aggravated robbery,
aggravated assault, and evading arrest.
Pictured (l-r) are Mayor Dean, State Representative Edith Taylor Langster, Officers
Wallace Taylor, Jessie Loy, Shawn Taylor, Kevin Lovell and Chief Serpas
Glen and Terry Hendon
Central Precinct Detective Sergeant Randy Brock
Two men with a history of burglary and theft convictions were arrested thanks to the
teamwork of a vigilant West Nashville couple and off-duty Detective Randy Brock.
Glen and Terry Hendon notified Sergeant Brock, their neighbor, about two suspicious
men driving a truck in the area. Brock got into his police car and stopped the pick up. A
nearby resident came to the scene and confirmed that chainsaws located in the truck bed had
been stolen from his crawlspace. Both men were taken into custody.
Pictured (l-r) are Mayor Dean, Sgt. Randy Brock, Terry and Glen Hendon and Chief Serpas.
Crime Stoppers Adds New Ways to Report Information
Chief Ronal Serpas and the Board of Directors of Nashville Crime Stoppers announced
two new ways for citizens to anonymously report information concerning wanted persons and
Effective immediately, persons can reach Crime Stoppers by texting the word CASH
along with their message to CRIMES (274637). An automated system will immediately reply
to the sender with a unique Tip ID, which can be used to report additional information or
inquire about a reward, which, in the discretion of the Crime Stoppers Board, can total up to
Persons with crime or criminal suspect information can now also report it anonymously
through Nashville Crime Stoppers’ new Internet site, www.nashvillecrimestoppers.com. The
web site is maintained by the Crime Stoppers Board and is not hosted by the Metropolitan
Government. Anonymity of a tipster is guaranteed through the texting and Internet reporting
methods, just as it has been for the past 26 years through the special 74-CRIME telephone line.
Callers are still welcome to dial 74-CRIME, which is answered 24 hours a day, seven days a
week. Spanish speaking operators are also available.
Detective Jim Lambert of the Specialized Investigations Division is the police
department’s Crime Stoppers Coordinator. In addition to processing tips and forwarding them
to the appropriate police department components, Lambert organizes Crime of the Week
reenactments for NewsChannel 5.
Chief Serpas discusses Crime Stoppers enhancements.
Defensive Tactics training
Members of Session 60 participate in the High Ropes Confidence
course at the YMCA Camp
Officers Complete Homeland Security Training
Field Training Officer Kevin Caperton and Sergeant Ralph Griggers recently completed
Homeland Security training at the Center for Domestic Preparedness (CDP), located in
Anniston, Alabama. The CDP is operated by the United States Department of Homeland
Security’s Federal Emergency Management Agency and is the only federally-chartered
Weapons of Mass Destruction (WMD) training facility in the nation.
Responders attending CDP training are selected from the nation’s 11 million emergency
responders. Training at the CDP ensures that responders gain critical skills and confidence to
be better prepared to effectively respond to local incidents or potential WMD incidents.
Commanders Meet with El Protector Board Members
South Precinct Commander Mike Alexander and Hermitage Precinct Commander
Michele Richter met with members of the El Protector board to discuss the Department’s
Hispanic community outreach program led by Officers Gilbert Ramirez and Rafael Fernandez.
El Protector board meeting
The Precinct News
Hermitage Precinct detectives arrested Nathan Daniel Neal for the shooting death of
Darius Turner, whose body was found on a remote section of Burnett Road near Old Hickory
Turner, 26, of Lewis Street, was dumped on the side of the road a short time before his
body was discovered by a security guard doing a routine check of the area.
Information developed the day after the murder led investigators to Neal, 24, of
Woodberry Drive in Donelson, who admitted to Detective Johnny Crumby that he shot Turner
inside his (Neal’s) car as the result of a drug dispute.
Turner’s record reflects felony drug convictions in 2003 and 2008.
At the time of the murder, Neal was free on $7500 bond in relation to a 2007 aggravated
assault charge. He is scheduled to appear in Criminal Court Thursday on that case. Neal was
also convicted of domestic assault in 2005.
South Precinct detectives charged four teenagers with aggravated robbery after they held
up a Brooklyn, New York man as he walked to his motel at I-24 & Bell Road.
The 28-year-old victim was walking through the parking lot of the Hickory Hollow Red
Lobster at 1 a.m. and talking on his cell phone when he approached a white Toyota Avalon.
Several teens got out of the car, one of whom pulled a semi-automatic pistol and demanded the
victim’s belongings. The victim surrendered his wallet and cell phone before being instructed
to run away.
The victim called police from his motel and South officers quickly flooded the area.
Within minutes, they spotted the car on Bell Road near Hickory Hollow Terrace. The four
teenagers were taken into custody without incident and were identified by the victim.
Charged with aggravated robbery are Mikel Haug, 19, of Pine Orchard Place in Antioch;
Andre Cartwright, 19, of Hickory Highlands Drive in Antioch; Stantore Brooks, 18, of Gannett
Peak Lane in Antioch; and Larance Holman, 17, of Cedarcreek Drive in South Nashville.
Detectives have charged a 15-year-old with carjacking, evading arrest and violating
curfew in connection with the robbery of a pizza deliveryman on Edwin Street.
When the deliveryman knocked on the door of what turned out to be a vacant home, two
gunmen approached and demanded his money and car keys. They fled in the victim’s Pontiac
A few hours later, Detective Craig Carlson, driving an unmarked car, spotted the Pontiac
traveling on Douglas Avenue. Officer Cody Jarvis joined Carlson and attempted to stop the
suspects. A two-minute pursuit ended on Slaydon Drive as the four persons in the Pontiac
bailed out and ran. 15-year-old Starolyn Macon was apprehended on Allenwood Drive. He
was booked at juvenile detention. Efforts continue to identify Macon’s accomplices.
West Precinct Flex officers April 16 charged 19 Hillsboro High School students with
loitering during school hours for leaving campus when they were supposed to be in class.
Most of the students received citations, although one of them, a 17-year-old 11th grader,
was physically arrested after he was found to be in possession of 25 grams of marijuana bagged
Crime Suppression Unit detectives charged three persons with multiple counts of
criminal simulation after discovering they were involved in a large-scale scheme to produce
bogus U.S. immigration cards, driver licenses, and social security cards.
The investigation began after a police informant of Hispanic descent reported that one of
the suspects, Alfonzo De La Luz, approached him in a South Nashville Wal-Mart, gave him a
business card, and offered to produce bogus government identification cards bearing the
informant’s photograph and any name he chose. The price quoted was $270 for an immigration
card, driver license, and social security card.
De La Luz, 20, and a co-defendant, Senon Gines-Ramos, 19, were stopped by police
while en route to deliver the fake IDs, which the informant requested be in the name of “Ronal
Cerpas.” De La Luz, Gines-Ramos, and a third defendant, Estela Gonzalez, 25, evidently keep
up with current events, as they actually produced the fake IDs in the name of “Ronal Serpas,”
Nashville’s police chief.
Detectives then executed a search warrant at Gonzalez’s apartment in the Signature
Pointe complex on Piccadilly Row, where the counterfeit cards were being made. Inside
officers found 289 completed cards, 667 blanks, a camera, three computers, two copiers, and a
Due the extensive nature of this operation, the United States Secret Service is working
with Central Precinct detectives to analyze the evidence and determine whether others are
Immigration holds have also been placed on them because they are suspected of being in
the country illegally.
A woman on parole for robbery and two men are in custody after they held up two women
at gunpoint at the intersection of 4th Avenue South and Molloy Street in downtown Nashville.
Bertina Baker, 25, and Lawrence Brown III, 22, demanded the victims’ purses. The
women, who are both in their 20s, complied. Baker and Brown fled in a silver Mercury Cougar
driven by Benjamin Mimms, 20.
A short time after the robbery, Officer Christopher Lo spotted the suspect vehicle on
Lafayette Street near Charles E. Davis Boulevard. Mimms stopped the car. All three were
taken into custody. Items stolen in the robbery and a handgun were located in the Mercury.
The victims positively identified Baker and Brown as the persons who robbed them. Mimms
admitted he was the driver of the getaway car.
Baker, Brown, and Mimms are each charged with two counts of aggravated robbery.
At the time of the robbery, Baker was on parole until 2012 for a 2008 robbery conviction.
She also has convictions for identity theft and theft.
Retired Officer John Niedzwiecki passed away April 11.
Thomas Baldwin, the father-in-law of Lieutenant Justin Pinkelton, passed away.