Tennessee Highway Patrol Sergeant James Sells has resigned in lieu of termination following an internal investigation.
Authorities said the investigation stemmed from allegations that Sells had violated Tennessee Department of Safety and Homeland Security policies and procedures.
During the investigation, authorities discovered Sells had misused state property and equipment, as well as was negligent in the performance of his duties and violated the department's rule on conduct while on duty.
“Tennessee state troopers are held to a higher standard of conduct. Sgt. Sells' actions have violated the trust of the department and the citizens of Tennessee. We will not tolerate any act that will cast doubt upon the credibility of the Tennessee Highway Patrol,” Colonel Trott said.
Forty-five-year-old Sells has served as a state trooper since August of 1998, with his most recent assignment as sergeant in the Criminal Investigations Division in Putnam County.
Sells was initially placed on discretionary leave with pay on October 2.
His resignation will go into effect on Thursday.
As a result of his resignation, Sells has forfeited his right to appeal the decision.