Troubled officers part of Memphis Police Department legacy

In 2005, Memphians were confronted with the sordid story of Patrick Joynt, a rogue Memphis Police Department officer who wrecked nine patrol cars, drew reprimands for careless use of his firearm, went AWOL and made unwelcome advances toward female citizens and city employees.

When finally convicted in an FBI sting of stealing $12,000 from a drug dealer, Joynt emerged as something of a symbol for MPD’s tarnished image. He was one of 46 MPD officers and employees charged with corruption between 2004 and 2009 — an average of nearly eight a year — many with long disciplinary records like Joynt’s. MPD employees were charged with stealing huge sums of cash and drugs from the evidence room, providing protection to criminals, running drugs, even planting evidence on innocent drivers during traffic stops.

Though the number of corruption arrests at MPD has slowed, a recent spate of trouble has Mayor A C Wharton asking fresh questions about the department.


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