LMPD :: Louisville Metro Police Department

LMPD moves to fire detective for threatening to kill command staff


A Louisville Metro Police detective was informed Wednesday he will be fired after threatening to kill other law enforcement officers, according to a pre-termination letter from Chief Erika Shields.

The letter says Detective Christopher Palombi "made statements that you were going to bring guns to the Homicide Unit and kill people," including members of the command staff.

The threats were made in December and January, according to the letter.

Homicide Unit detectives and sergeants were told to stay away from the office "which impacted the morale, operations and efficiency of the Homicide Unit," Shields wrote.

Jefferson County Sheriff's Department Maj. Mike Littlefield said his office has been made aware of an officer who is a "person of interest" and deputies were watching out for Palombi.

Palombi has prior military experience and "probably access to weapons and could possibly be dressed in a police uniform," wrote Major George Grissom of the Jefferson County Sheriff's Department in an email to court personnel. Grissom heads the office's courts division.

Attorney Thomas Clay said Thursday afternoon he was with Palombi and will appeal a February 16 pre-termination letter to Shields on Monday.

Clay said Palombi has severe post traumatic stress disorder from serving in combat in Afghanistan and being shot at four times during the 2020 protests in Louisville.

He has been in treatment in California for the last 30 days, Clay added.

"From my observation, he doesn't pose a danger to anybody," Clay said.

The department recommended firing Palombi for a violation of obedience to rules and regulations and conduct unbecoming.

Palombi allegedly made the threats after requesting to be reassigned to the Office of Sexual and Physical Investigations and in response to being told he would be transferred out of the homicide unit, according to the pre-termination letter.

The threats constitute a violation of terroristic threatening in the third degree, Shields wrote.

Palombi has not been charged.

In a statement, LMPD said the department could not discuss that notice but that they have no information anyone in the Hall of Justice was a target.

"All appropriate precautionary measures are being taken," the statement said.

Among his other work, Palombi was the lead detective in the murder investigation of 35-year-old Jeremy Lind, who was tortured and died after his tongue was removed in 2020.