Former Van Buren Co. Detective Facing Dozens Of Charges

Former Van Buren Co. Detective Facing Dozens Of Charges

CREATED Feb 20, 2014

by Jason Lamb

SPENCER, Tenn. - A former detective for the Van Buren County Sheriff's Department was put behind bars Wednesday. Deputies arrested him on 30 different charges stemming from his time as a detective.

Connor Wardlaw was arrested Wednesday afternoon outside his home, and brought to his former workplace, the Van Buren County Sheriff's Department, for booking.

Wardlaw faces 30 different charges that range from theft to destruction of government records, tampering with evidence and official misconduct.  All the charges stemmed from his time as a detective.

According to indictments, at least one of the charges alleges Wardlaw stole a gun from the Sheriff's Department evidence room and replaced it with another one in an attempt to cover it up. Other counts allege Wardlaw stole another gun and a set of body armor that was being held as evidence in a different case.

Wardlaw is also facing charges of official oppression-- using his authority to arrest or detain someone illegally.

Wardlaw left the Sheriffs Department in May 2013. He was part of some of the department's biggest investigations, and sometimes appeared on NewsChannel 5 broadcasts about Van Buren County cases.

"Those who wear the badge and take an oath to serve and protect the public should be held to a higher standard," said Lisa Zavogiannis, the District Attorney overseeing Van Buren County. "These actions by Mr. Wardlaw violated the public trust, and he will be held accountable for his actions."

Wardlaw's bond was set at $175,000. He posted bond within an hour of being booked.