NewsLEX 18 Investigates


Will sheriff's deputy fired over hospital incident lose certification?

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Posted at 7:00 PM, Oct 11, 2022
and last updated 2022-10-12 12:39:15-04

The first step has been taken to determine if former Franklin County sheriff’s deputy Nathan Doty could lose his certification to be a peace officer in the state of Kentucky.

The Kentucky Law Enforcement Council, or KLEC, recently made the decision to initiate the proceedings to revoke Doty’s certification, according to a letter from the council that was obtained by LEX 18. In the Sept. 6 letter to Doty, the council informed him that he had the right to a revocation hearing.

The letter is part of what could be a year-long process that will end in a vote by the full law enforcement council whether or not to revoke Doty’s certification.

Doty was fired by Franklin County Sheriff Chris Quire after body camera video came to light that showed Doty’s treatment of an arrested man who was handcuffed to a hospital bed.

"I knew we couldn't defend that, couldn't correct it through mentoring or training, any of those things," Quire said in an interview earlier this year.

The man who was handcuffed to the hospital bed, Tony Austin, had been arrested for menacing, resisting arrest and disorderly conduct. Austin was arrested in January of 2020, but he didn’t see the video of his arrest until nearly two years later.

“There's no reason for that,” Austin said in an April interview. “When you're handcuffed in their custody, they're supposed to take care of you.”

Quire told LEX 18 that supervisors with the sheriff’s office didn’t see the video until Austin asked for it through an open records request. The sheriff’s office immediately suspended Doty after watching the video and eventually fired him.

Doty has denied any wrongdoing and filed a lawsuit against the sheriff’s office arguing that he was wrongfully terminated.

A law passed last year requires police agencies to report officers who are fired or resigned while under investigation for fireable offenses to the Kentucky Law Enforcement Council. The council can then move to have the officers’ certifications revoked, barring them from becoming officers at other agencies in the state.

LEX 18 reached out to Doty's attorney for comment but did not hear back.