Drug Seizure Earns Officer Special Award
June 3, 2004 - Knoxville Mayor Bill Haslam and Deputy Chief Bill Roehl today named Knoxville Police Department West District Officer Harry McGuffee as the April Officer of the Month. Officer McGuffee has been with the Knoxville Police Department since December 1999 and was previously honored as the November 2000 Officer of the Month.
Deputy Chief Roehl said that on April 3, 2004 Officer McGuffee was called to 735 West Oak Hill Avenue to assist investigators with the arrest of two suspects. The resident, Ralph Piety, granted Officer McGuffee permission to search his residence for the suspects. Two suspects were taken into custody for questioning.
Later in the evening, investigators requested that Officer McGuffee return to the Oak Hill residence to detain Piety for questioning. A second individual, John Ruben Williams, was with Piety when Officer McGuffee arrived. While at the residence, Officer McGuffee noticed evidence of drug activity in plain view.
A search of the two individuals resulted in the discovery of a small amount of marijuana. After conducting interviews with both individuals, a search warrant was obtained for Piety's residence and vehicle.
During the search officers discovered over four pounds of marijuana, nineteen grams of crack cocaine, twenty-five grams of powder cocaine, four sets of scales, a SKS assault rifle, and a Ruger 9MM handgun.
Deputy Chief Roehl said, "This case would not have been possible without Officer McGuffee's keen since of observation, awareness of evidence of drug activity, and strong interviewing skills. This seizure resulted in the removal of drugs, dangerous weapons, and an armed drug dealer from the streets of Knoxville."
Mayor Haslam said, "Officer McGuffee looked beyond what might be considered a routine call to assist investigators with an arrest. Because of his actions, Officer McGuffeee is truly deserving of this special award."
Officer McGuffee will receive a signed certificate from Mayor Haslam and Chief Phil Keith along with a free dinner from Ruby Tuesday Restaurant.