Cartersville police reported today that they have suspended one of their lieutenants with pay pending the outcome of an investigation into criminal activity.

According to a release from the Cartersville Police Department, Lt. Nicky Cowart and his wife Dana have been charged with 10 counts of forgery, related to Dana Cowart’s former employment with A1 Truck Escort Inc.

The release stated that a complaint was received by the Bartow County Sheriff’s Office that “one of our employees may be involved in some type of illegal activity.”

“Once we were advised of the possible involvement by one of our employees, we initiated an internal investigation,” said Chief Thomas N. Culpepper in the release.

The Georgia Bureau of Investigation was brought in to conduct the investigation.

“The GBI was requested so that an impartial review of the facts would be made without influence from the agency,” said Culpepper. “Based on the evidence discovered, Agent John Farmer of the GBI has filed charges against both Nicky and Dana Cowart.”

Culpepper also said, “It is my belief that we have a duty to the citizens, and to the employees, to investigate any complaint of improper conduct, especially when the allegation is criminal nature. The community expects us to regulate ourselves and this is what we have done. It is unfortunate that the Cowarts, and the Agency have been put in this situation, but we will rely on the judicial process to fairly resolve the issue.”

Rome News Tribune