LMPD :: Louisville Metro Police Department
Updated: Tuesday, February 9th, 2010

LMPD officer under investigation by FBI & PIU


For nearly five years, a Louisville metro police officer has been under investigation by the FBI and the police department's public integrity unit.

The allegations were that the officer was treasurer of a non-profit organization and stole nearly $15,000 from the group.

But despite a mountain of evidence, the case has not been prosecuted.

Admittedly, we hold law enforcement officers to a higher standard when it comes to honesty, integrity and the expectation that they will obey the law. After all, we should, since they are the people enforcing laws.

WHAS11 News obtained hundreds of pages of evidence from police showing a police officer, Jackie Hollingsworth, used money from a non-profit organization to her own benefit but nobody has been willing to prosecute.

We wanted to find out why, but when we started asking questions, we discovered no one wants to talk about this case.

There are more than 500 pages of evidence in this public integrity unit investigation that dates back to 2004.

Assistant Police Chief Troy Riggs discussed the undertaking in March.

Financial cases can become very complex. You have to look at bank records; you have to look at all the different types of records. That's one of the reasons we're having to take such a long time investigating this, he says.

The investigation involves alleged misuse of money belonging to the Louisville Black Officers Organization, which is a group formed in 1972 to support African American officers.

The group also sponsored outreach programs to discourage young people from lives of crime.

In 2000, the group bought this historic building on south Floyd Street with plans to renovate it.

Dozens of officers contributed money from their paychecks monthly to pay dues and support the project.

Jackie Hollingsworth, an LMPD community relations officer assigned to teach dare classes and encourage young people to stay out of trouble, was elected as the organization's new treasurer when the building was bought.

In that role, she was supposed to pay the bills and manage the books, including overseeing payments for the renovation.

Investigators said in the report that at that time, that Jackie Hollingsworth was facing foreclosure on her home.

Hollingsworth went to the BB&T that used to be located in a building on west Broadway to sign the paperwork for the loan.

According to investigators, before the money was even transferred into the Louisville Black Police Officers Organization's account, Hollingsworth wrote a $5,000 check to herself from that very account.

$3,800 was deposited in Hollingsworth's personal account at Chase Bank.

From those proceeds, an electronic check of more than $2,500 was issued to pay countrywide home loans for three months of Hollingsworth's delinquent mortgage payments.

Other bank records show Hollingsworth took out multiple cash advances and wrote checks to herself from the organization's account.

Blurry bank surveillance images show Hollingsworth cashing the checks.

Investigators learned Hollingsworth paid her personal LG&E account with the organizations' money and wrote checks to friends and family members.

In an interview with police, Hollingsworth admits writing a $1,000 check to her son, Drashawn Bartlett, who is now in prison for murder.

FBI agents and the Public Integrity Unit determined $14,531 dollars of the organization's money appeared to have been diverted for Hollingsworth's personal use in eight months.

Meanwhile, Hollingsworth stopped making mortgage and loan payments on behalf of the Black Officers Organization and the bank foreclosed on the property.

The organization, which had been around for 34 years, was dissolved.

The case was sent to the U.S. Attorney's Office, but federal prosecutors declined to seek indictment.

It then went back to LMPD investigators, where it remained for at least two more years.

After being previously assigned to two other state prosecutors, Assistant Commonwealth Attorney Mark Baker sent the public integrity investigators a memo this April saying, "before this case even gets a consideration to go forward, I would want to see the following: every officer of that organization past and present needs to come to my office, state they believe she misappropriated funds, state they wish to prosecute, state they are going to cooperate with you, state they are in possession of and are willing to produce all the documents supporting the questioned transactions like by yesterday and state they are ready and willing to testify at the grand jury and any other proceedings as needed."

When WHAS11 News got the file, the front page said "closed prosecution declined."

Meanwhile, officer Hollingsworth has been assigned to a patrol division.

Where she can arrest those she believes stole from someone else.

Hollingsworth originally said she would talk to WHAS11 News about the investigation, but later changed her mind, saying she needed to consult her union representative.

We talked to former officers of the Black Police Officers' Organization who originally agreed to talk, but changed their mind

Police even declined to talk after the case was closed, saying Hollingsworth could face departmental sanctions.

Finally, the commonwealth attorney's office refused to speak, saying if new evidence arose, they could try to prosecute the case.

The potential theft charges Hollingsworth could have faced would have resulted in up to five years in prison for each count.

Had she been convicted of a felony, she would have been fired.