Shelby County Sheriff’s deputies complete psychological retesting

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MEMPHIS, Tenn. — The Shelby County Sheriff's Office said 209 of its deputies underwent and passed psychological retesting after it was found that the previous psychologist was unlicensed.

The news that the department's previous psychologist was unlicensed was brought to officials on Jan. 23. This affected 214 deputies and 188 jailers, and 209 of those deputies were recently retested and passed the test.

"We would like to thank the deputies that were re-examined," Sheriff Floyd Bonner said. "We know that puts a lot of stress on them and their families not knowing whether or not they would have a job when this process is over."

Bonner said all the deputies who needed to be retested were retested, despite the number of deputies retested being lower than the original number of deputies who needed to be retested.

Bonner explained why five deputies were not included in those retested. He said one full-time deputy was terminated "unrelated to this process," two full-time deputies were on extended military leave, one deputy recruit resigned before the process was finished and one reserve deputy was also on extended military leave.

Bonner said the office has hired Dr. Lisa Alex as its new psychological administrator. Alex, a licensed psychologist, worked with the Sheriff's Office during the retesting process.

He also said the Sheriff's Office will create its own human resources department with Janice Holmes as its director.

Dr. Charles Kenny was hired in 2013 to administer the test, but records show he was not licensed in the state since 2001. According to a 2018 county contract, he was paid an amount not to exceed $40,000 for his services during the term of that contract.

Shelby County Mayor Lee Harris said since 2013, Kenny has done evaluations for people with the following jobs: Sheriff's deputies, Corrections deputies, dispatchers, process officers, firefighters, juvenile court detention officers and court officers.

The result of the 188 jailers' retests has not been released, but WREG was told that should be completed soon.

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