Walker County Sheriff John Mark Tirey confirmed Thursday that Adam Hadder, a deputy and former assistant director of the Walker County Narcotics Enforcement Team, had been fired earlier that afternoon. Tirey said he could not comment further on the matter.
Gayle Gear, a Birmingham attorney representing Hadder, said her client had not received official notice of his termination Thursday. She said calls from the press regarding the situation were the only notifications she had received. Hadder is expected to appeal the firing to the Walker County Civil Service Board, which must be done within 10 days of his termination.
“This matter has never been heard by independent people, and we look forward to that,” Gear said.
Jasper attorney Thomas Carmichael filed a civil suit in August on behalf of Gerald Garrison, a process server who was allegedly arrested by Hadder for attempting to serve him with a subpoena. Carmichael cited posts made by Hadder on the Daily Mountain Eagle Facebook page as evidence that he tried to intimidate and threaten Garrison and others, which led to Hadder being suspended from the sheriff’s office.
Two other suits were filed in late August, with the defendants named as Hadder, Tirey, the Walker County Commission and Bruce Hamrick, the commission’s chairman.
One of the suits, filed by Jasper attorney Byron McMath, claimed Hadder verbally abused and threatened D’Arvy Shawn Franks before arresting and booking him for crimes that he says he did not participate in or have any knowledge about.
Carmichael and Nicholas Sparks filed a claim against the same defendants on behalf of Kathy Sanford, claiming Hadder verbally and physically assaulted her at a Curry High School football game in 2011.
“I respect Sheriff Tirey for exercising great patience in giving Mr. Hadder not one, not two, but three opportunities to come to his office and give his side of the story to try to explain why he should not be fired,” Carmichael said in a written statement. “This is exactly the kind of Constitutional protection that I think everyone should have, including Mr. Hadder, and I regret that he did not choose to take advantage of it and set out his side of the story. My clients set forth their reasons as to why Mr. Hadder should be fired in writing, one with a formal letter to the sheriff and the other in her lawsuit more than a month ago.”
Gear said the allegations are simply that — allegations.
“None of these allegations have gone to trial, and they are simply allegations by attorneys,” she said. “The public needs to know that my client has worked successfully and uneventfully protecting them for 15 years. He looks forward to having a full hearing and clearing his name.”
Representatives with the Walker County Civil Service Board could not be reached Thursday to determine a timetable for when a hearing may take place.