Arkansas State Police employee using position for personal gain and financial benefit - ASP trying to hide it.
By Russ Racop
Chadwick "Chad" Dell Gibson (44 yrs) of Bryant, AR is a dispatcher for the Arkansas State Police Troop A in Little Rock with a salary of $40,566.31. He has been employed by the ASP since September 10, 2018.
As such he is involved in radio communications with troopers and has intimate knowledge about their activities. He also has access to data and records.
Gibson also runs a YouTube channel, Police Pursuits, which went live on May 6th, 2022.
Gibson's channel has 177k subscribers and is monetized.
The income Gibson derives from his channel is substantial.
Gibson's channel content consists exclusively of video recordings from ASP troopers.
In addition to considerable revenue from the videos he posts, Gibson solicits additional payments from viewers.
As a dispatcher for ASP, Gibson has ready access to details about ASP pursuits and his channel is able to drop videos of ASP Troopers performing PIT maneuvers, etc., days before other YouTube channels are able to request and obtain the videos.
Based on videos we obtained from ASP, channels like Gibson's actually encourage troopers to help create content by conducting PIT maneuvers,and playing up for the viewers by using foul language and hurling insults at suspects to ensure they will have a video featured on these channels.
All ASP employees, civilian and sworn officers, are required to file a document with the ASP and obtain permission for outside employment.
When Gibson started his channel back in May 2022, he failed to file that document and obtain permission for the outside job.
It wasn't until other YouTube creators became suspicious as to how Police Pursuits scooped them and did some sleuthing and discovered that Gibson ran that channel and actually worked at ASP.
While so other ASP employees and Troopers knew that Gibson was Police Pursuits, higher ups at ASP were surely in the dark.
With his secret exposed and dozens of FOI requests made for records regarding Gibson and Police Pursuits, Gibson was forced to try and salvage his career and side income stream.
On March 10, 2023, Gibson filed documents with the State of Arkansas to legally establish his lucrative side business.
A few days later Gibson filed the required outside employment form he failed to do so back in 2022.
Astute and observant readers will note that the ASP has made certain redactions on the form before releasing a copy to us.
While Gibson's personnel number is exempt from disclosure under the Arkansas Freedom of Information Act ("AFOIA") The name of his employer and his duties there are not.
This is a calculated and deliberate action of the ASP to try and hide their employee's lucrative side job from the public and certain individuals collusion with Gibson to violate state laws.
The ASP claims the information is exempt:
The Supreme Court has made plain in two cases, Young v Rice, 308 Ark. 593, 826 S.W.2d 252 (1992) and Stilley v. McBride, 332 Ark. 306, 965 S.W. 2d 125 (1998) that the public interest in access to the records must be balanced against the employee’s privacy interest , with the scale tipped in favor of public access.
Also see Pulaski County v, Arkansas Democrat Gazette, Inc., 370
Ark. 435, 260 S.W. 3rd 718; and McCambridge v. City of
Little Rock, 298 Ark. 219, 766 S.W. 2d 909 (1989).
subsection (b)(12) of the AFOIA “allows warranted invasions of privacy, it follows that when
the public’s interest is substantial (as it is in this instance) it will
outweigh any individual privacy interests and disclosure will be favored.
A renowned expert on the AFOIA says this:
Back in 2015 we investigated and reported on a similar situation at the Arkansas Alcoholic Beverage Control section of the Department of Finance & Administration.
Just like Gibson, that state employee was using his position for personal gain and benefit.
That DFA/ABC employee resigned the day after our story published.
Our Russ Racop filed a complaint about that DFA/ABC employee with the Arkansas Ethics Commission, just like he will do for Gibson and they found that the DFA/ABC employee had violated state laws.
Links to those stories:
***UPDATE - 07/31/23***
A light bulb went on in someone's head at the State Police Headquarters.
After we clearly and convincingly argued that certain redactions they made on a public record were illegal, they carefully and considerately agreed.