Franklin County Sheriff Chris Quire said Thursday that he has retained a retired FBI agent and supervisor to conduct an independent investigation of alleged police misconduct by Detective Jeff Farmer.
The investigation began Thursday, Quire said, with the main investigator already conducting interviews.
Quire’s announcement comes nearly a week after all five Franklin County public defenders penned a letter criticizing Farmer’s attendance at a pro-Trump rally preceding a mob's siege of the U.S. Capitol last week. They were also critical of his police record, claiming that Farmer was involved in cases that reflect “targeting and racial profiling.”
Members of the community group Focus on Race Relations held a meeting with Quire specifically about Farmer’s conduct as it relates to race and the use of force in late August.
On Sunday, Quire announced that he had reassigned Farmer pending a “thorough investigation” of the public defenders’ accusations. Quire added on Thursday that Farmer has been reassigned to "non-law enforcement" administrative duties, and that his pay remains the same as it was before the investigation.
Quire emphasized that his office's investigation is not criminal in nature.
Leading the investigation is Carl F. Christiansen, president of Advanced Investigative Solutions (AIS) Inc. Christiansen has around 25 years of experience with the Federal Bureau of Investigation as an agent and a supervisor. AIS’ brochure states that the company has “assisted hundreds of clients” since 2003.
In 2017, former University of Louisville basketball coach Rick Pitino hired Christiansen to administer a polygraph test to him and interview individuals involved in the program's infamous stripper scandal.
"Deputy Farmer is not under a criminal investigation," Quire wrote in a news release Thursday. "But we have retained retired Agent Christiansen to provide an impartial, thorough, independent and transparent accounting of the facts surrounding the Public Defenders' allegations made against Deputy Farmer. My intentions as sheriff should be clear — to provide our community a law enforcement agency that is fair and equitable for all."
Quire said AIS was recommended to him by the Kentucky Sheriff’s Association.
“I asked for their advice and they said ‘here’s you somebody,’” Quire said. “I've never met the guy, but I saw his resume and I said, ‘Yeah, that’s who I want.’”
Quire asked for citizens to contact his office with their concerns.
"As this investigation proceeds, we urge any members of the public who may have complaints or allegations regarding interaction with Deputy Farmer, who have concerns about alleged social media posts, or who may have relevant information to come forward," Quire wrote.