Putnam Co. Tax Assessor Indicted On Theft, Misconduct Charges

Putnam Co. Tax Assessor Indicted On Theft, Misconduct Charges

CREATED Mar 25, 2014

COOKEVILLE, Tenn. – Travis Roberts, the Tax Assessor for Putnam County, has been indicted on charges of misconduct and theft.

Officials with the Cookeville Police Department said a Putnam County Grand Jury returned two indictments Tuesday, charging 44-year-old Roberts with Theft Over $1,000 and Official Misconduct.

Police said Roberts allegedly sold property purchased by the county in exchange for cash and narcotics.

Roberts turned himself in to the Putnam County Criminal Justice Center and was released a short time later on $2,000 bond.

In January, Roberts was arrested on multiple charges, including possession of marijuana, driving under the influence, refusal of implied consent, speeding, and not wearing a seatbelt.

Roberts spoke with NewsChannel 5 shortly after he was released on bond.

"I'm ashamed," said Roberts back in January. "I've disappointed my family, I've disappointed my friends, (and the) people who voted for me."

The incident is the latest controversy for the Putnam County Tax Assessor's Office. In 1998, Byron Looper, was accused of murdering Senator Tommy Burks in order to inherit his Senate seat.

He was convicted of the crime two years later.

In 1999, Rhonda Chaffin was elected to the office. The State Comptroller said Chaffin undervalued nearly 200 properties by $82 million over the course of three years. The properties were owned by some of the county's most prominent citizens.

Chaffin denied any wrongdoings and was voted out of office in August 2012.

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