Blockbuster Investigative Report by NewsChannel 5 Adds to Mayor Barry Scandal: ‘Chief Anderson Did Not Receive Nor Approve Sgt. Forrest’s Travel Requests’

Since first admitting to a two year long extramarital affair with the head of her security detail, Sgt. Rob Forrest, Nashville Mayor Megan Barry has maintained that Metro Police Chief Steve Anderson insisted that a security detail travel with her at all times, and that all of Forrest’s travel with her was approved by the Metro Nashville Police Department.

But in a blockbuster report that aired on Friday, NewsChannel5’s Phil Williams revealed that documents obtained from the Mayor’s office which purport to show Chief Anderson approved Forrest’s travel with her are factually incorrect.

As The Tennessee Star has reported, Mayor Barry and Sgt. Forrest traveled alone together at taxpayer expense on nine occasions in 2017 on trips to Athens, Greece, San Francisco, California, and Washington, D.C., among other places.

They also traveled together when accompanied by other Metro Nashville employees to other cities, including one memorable trip from October 20 to 25 of 2017 to Paris, France.

“As the city hall scandal unfolded, Police Chief Anderson insisted he never approved Sgt. Rob Forrest’s travel with Nashville Mayor Megan Barry,” NewsChannel 5 anchor Rhori Johnston began the report.

“But documents released today by the Mayor’s office say he did. So what’s the truth?” Johnston’s co-anchor asked.

“Did you approve the trips to Greece, for example,” NewsChannel 5’s Phil Williams asked Chief Anderson.

“I didn’t personally approve those,” Anderson responded.

The travel documents obtained by Williams from the Mayor’s office on Friday purported to show that Anderson had, in fact, approved those requests, but an investigation Friday by Metro Nashville’s IT Department concluded, fairly quickly, that Anderson had not, in fact, approved those travel requests, and the documents presented to NewsChannel5 by the Mayor’s office contained that false representation due to “a computer glitch.”

“Tonight, city officials are blaming a computer glitch,” Williams reported.

Closeup of ‘History’ section of travel document submitted to NewsChannel5 by Mayor Megan Barry’s Office purporting to show Chief Anderson approved Forrest travel to Paris, France with Mayor Barry

In a Travel Authorization form submitted by Sgt. Forrest on October 4 at 3:02 pm for the October 20 to 25 trip to Paris with Mayor Barry and other Metro Nashville employees, the “history” section claimed that the Mayor’s Chief of Staff, Deborah Mason, was notified of the request at 3:02 pm and that Police Chief Steve Anderson purportedly approved the request at 5:45 pm, at which time Eugene Nolan, Deputy Director of the Finance Department, was notified. Nolan approved the request the following day, on October 5 at 12:22 pm, at which time the request was deemed “completed.”

When NewsChannel 5 pointed out this error to the Mayor’s office, they called it “a glitch.”

But a more troubling explanation may apply as well.

Chief of Staff Mason was notified at 3:02 pm, but inexplicably, Police Chief Anderson was not.

The system appears to be set up so that an approval can come only after an individual has received a notification.

But the notification sent to Mason was immediately followed by an approval, purportedly by Anderson, according to the Mayor’s office. But Anderson was never notified.

Somehow, the system may have been manipulated by an unknown individual so that Chief Anderson’s appeared as the approver when, in fact, another individual was the approver.

“Chief Anderson never saw any of those,” Don Aaron, MNPD spokesperson, told Williams of the documents provided to NewsChannel 5 that purport to show Anderson had approved Forrest’s travel authorization documents for trips with Barry.

“Every travel request from a member of the Police Department is routed to him. These were not,” Aaron added.

After an audit, Keith Durbin, the head of Metro Nashville’s Information Technology Services department wrote in a memo obtained by NewsChannel 5:

After completing the investigation, ITS has concluded that due to a long undiscovered system flaw affecting an infrequent situation, Chief Anderson did not receive nor approve Sgt. Forrest’s travel requests pursuant to protocol.

“According to the memo, the travel for Sgt. Forrest and other members of the mayor’s security detail was approved by the Mayor’s chief of staff,” NewsChannel 5’s Williams reported.

Debbie Mason, the Mayor’s chief of staff, is listed as the first person notified in the travel authorization documents submitted for approval by Forrest.

In a separate report, Fox17 noted that documents provided to them by the Mayor’s office also purported to show that Police Chief Anderson had approved a trip by Forrest to Washington, D.C. to provide security for Mayor Barry.

That document showed the same “history” as the document that falsely showed Chief Anderson had approved Forrest’s travel to Paris: Submission by Forrest, Notification to Mason, Approval by Anderson, Notification to Dolan, Approval by Dolan, and then COMPLETION.

Highlight of ‘History’ section of travel document submitted to Fox 17 by Mayor Megan Barry’s Office purporting to show Chief Anderson approved Forrest travel to Washington, D.C. with Mayor Barry




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15 Thoughts to “Blockbuster Investigative Report by NewsChannel 5 Adds to Mayor Barry Scandal: ‘Chief Anderson Did Not Receive Nor Approve Sgt. Forrest’s Travel Requests’”

  1. Dwayne Oxford

    Cities. Concentrations of idiots who elect criminals to govern. Cain built the 1st. Cancers on God’s green earth, blue ones malignant.

  2. Alison

    This is not a political issue its a moral and ethical issue. Both parties have politicians who call these into question. However statistically it is usually the red party who participates or gets caught. Regardless we do not need a mayor who is a liar. Period. Shes refusing to leave..lets push her out.

    1. BonHagar

      Well, let’s see the proof then.

    2. M Ryun

      Please provide these “statistics” you speak of.

    3. Rog

      Alison, in the era of Harvey Weinstein, blaming the red party is risible.

  3. Ann Moore

    Why does the mayor need protection when traveling to cities where no one would know her from Adam? Why does she need “protection” at an event in which security was already provided? Sounds like she’s blowing up her importance to justify taking her lover with her on these trips.

  4. Kirk J Lumm

    Did all travel requests from other officers also get auto approval from the Chief without his knowledge during this time via the glitch? Who approved his overtime pay? Was it required to be approved in advance or only after the fact? Was a reason for the overtime required and would it show the time and place for the overtime? Is the police department saying they were unaware of travel and overtime until after the fact? Plenty of questions.

  5. lb

    A “flaw” a “glitch” JUST affecting our adulteress mayoress’s travel for her lover? Not TOO suspicious. She needs to GO–I saw part of her interview last night on TV and that smirk she plasters on her face no matter what the question is insulting. It looked like she was laughing the entire way thru the interview. Of course the guy interviewing kept talking about the mayoress’s “pain”–who gives a damn about that? How about the pain of the bodyguard’s wife and family?
    Arrogant, smug and tone deaf–a sad way to go thru life

  6. Mary Anne Drake

    More lies…Looks like Megan Barry is not the only one that needs to go..These libs think anything they do is OK….Hope they don’t sweep all this under the rug, as usual 🙁

  7. Papa

    Same liberal song and dance! My name is on it but I didn’t do it!
    Scratch my back and I will scratch yours . . . . .or whatever you need scratched!

  8. Floyd

    Megan and the Barry pranksters are trying to make a silk purse out of a sow’s ear and it’s not happening.

  9. Eric

    Was Anderson doing her too? Makes one wonder!

  10. Kevin

    Computer glitch, or is it a system that doesn’t provide adequate and appropriate oversight, either way, the people at the top are responsible and MUST be held accountable! Sure seems like the inmates are running the jail. The Mayor and the COP must be replaced! This is an embarrassment to every Tennessean!

  11. ron stone

    When caught blame a “computer glich”. You know, the same computer that the data was input by a person. Coupled with a Police Chief who is somehow left out of the loop more than once and there you have it. Honest mistakes not caused by anyone, all to the benefit of the Mayor and her battery-not-required toy.