Former investigator alleges discrimination

Published 12:00 am Friday, November 7, 2003

Former Dallas County Sheriff’s Department investigator Nash Gipson has filed a charge of racial discrimination with the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission against his former department.

According to Montgomery-based attorney Julian L. McPhillips Jr., who represents Gipson, the EEOC filing is a necessary foundation for a possible lawsuit. McPhillips noted that the EEOC is expected to investigate Gipson’s claims in the coming months.

If the situation isn’t resolved through mediation or settlement, McPhillips said he plans on filing a lawsuit after receiving a right-to-sue letter from the EEOC.

Email newsletter signup

Dallas County Sheriff Harris Huffman Jr. referred all comments to his lawyer Cartledge Blackwell, who could not be reached for comment.

According to Gipson’s EEOC affidavit, which was filed Nov. 5, he received &uot;extremely serious&uot; discriminatory treatment beginning Oct. 21 when he issued a search warrant, which was based on information from a confidential informant.

Robert Dower, 28, of Selma was arrested Oct. 21 and charged with six drug-related counts. However, Dower was released from jail Oct. 28.

According to Huffman, discrepancies existed in the affidavit and search warrant.

According to Gipson’s affidavit, he was &uot;attacked&uot; for issuing an invalid warrant.

According to the affidavit, a member of the Sheriff’s Department said the warrant was invalid because the confidential informant wasn’t in the room where law enforcement authorities found the drugs.

But in his affidavit, the former investigator claims the informant could see the transaction.

According to the affidavit, Gipson was told that if he didn’t resign, he would be fired.

McPhillips said that, among other things, he could seek Gipson’s reinstatement, attorney’s fees and lost income as a result of the alleged discrimination.