CHATTANOOGA, Tenn. (WDEF) — The Hamilton County Commission held its weekly meeting Tuesday morning due to the Fourth of July holiday on Wednesday, but the end of the meeting was a bit different than most.
After the public response portion of the county commission meeting, a letter from Hamilton County’s Chief Magistrate Lorrie Miller was read into the record, asking for the resignation of recently appointed magistrate judge Stuart Brown. And according to commissioners, this has been an ongoing issue.
Hamilton County commissioners heard arguments for and against the firing of recently appointed magistrate judge Stuart Brown. Brown’s first day in office was June 1, the same day Lorrie Miller began her stint as chief magistrate.
But now, Miller is asking the commission to fire Brown due to alleged performance issues.
“We had been communicating with Ms. Miller, and she had concerns that too many mistakes were being made,” Hamilton County Commissioner Chester Bankston said.
Miller’s full letter was read into the commission’s minutes, and according to citizens in the audience, the commissioners’ moods changed.
“The meeting got disshuffled. You know, it got extended and dragged out and it seemed like they were trying to close out the audience from hearing what was going to be said,” Rick Carpenter said.
But the meeting went on, as the commission tried to make a decision regarding Judge Brown’s employment.
“We discussed them at length, but then we decided that we needed to hear from each one of them again,” Bankston said.
Carpenter is concerned the commission will hold that meeting behind closed doors, but Commissioner Bankston ensures it will be open to the public.
Commissioner Tim Boyd is expected to announce the meeting date soon.
We spoke with Chief Magistrate Lorrie Miller. She did not want to comment as the issue is still ongoing.