TBI investigating office of attorney facing harassment charge - CBS46 News

TBI investigating office of attorney facing harassment charge

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Christie Overstreet Hill Christie Overstreet Hill
Fletcher Long Fletcher Long

A prominent Clarksville attorney, who is part of the legal team defending a former Vanderbilt football player accused of rape, is facing legal trouble of his own.

On Tuesday, Fletcher Long was arrested on a harassment charge.

Now, the Channel 4 I-Team has confirmed Long and his former law partners are under investigation by the Tennessee Bureau of Investigation.

And we are hearing for the first time from the former spokeswoman for the city of Clarksville who says Long stalked her and threatened her through a series of text messages.

"I knew once I did it, there was no turning back," Christie Overstreet Hill said.

Hill is talking about the harassment warrant she swore out on her former boss, attorney Fletcher Long.

Long has represented some of the biggest accused criminals in recent Middle Tennessee memory - from the so-called "Wooded Rapist" Robert Burdick, to Vanderbilt rape suspect Brandon Vandenburg.

Hill says she worked for Long up until last month, when she was told her contract had ended with the firm.

When she says her last four paychecks bounced, Hill went for help.

"I went to the DA. That was the only place I could get good advice about what to do about these checks, get these checks paid," Hill said.

Hill said that's when she started getting texts from Long's phone number.

One reads, in part: "Keep poking b---. Keep making our little visits to the district attorney's office. You are playing a game with dangerous consequences. Smarten up little one and sleep with one eye open."

"They got scary, and I didn't know what to do," Hill said.

Long refused to interview with the Channel 4 I-Team on Wednesday but did say, when he left jail Tuesday, that he did not send the text messages.

"You're assuming it came off of my phone. And I don't know if that's an assumption that's fair to make. We've just been served with the charges. I know I didn't do it. That's all I can tell you," Long said.

TBI spokeswoman Kristin Helm confirms to the Channel 4 I-Team the TBI has launched an investigation in 2011 into Long on allegations of theft and extortion.

Helm says Long's former law partners are under investigation as well.

Long's current law partner, John Herbison, says Long is not the target of the investigation.

"We have been fully cooperative and assured by the case agent that Fletcher is not a target," Herbison said.

Hill said she was there when agents moved in.

"TBI stayed well into the night, took boxes, files, computers," she said.

Hill said she knows speaking out will now make her life even tougher.

"I don't think the worst has come yet," Hill said.

Helm said they were asked in February 2011 by a special prosecutor to investigate Long and his former partners.

In a statement to the Channel 4 I-Team, Helm said:

"TBI was requested to open a criminal investigation in February 2011 on Gasaway, Long and Farmer, PLLC. Allegations being investigated against Long include theft and extortion. District Attorney General Tommy Thompson is currently the special prosecutor assigned to the case. At this time, no one has been charged and the investigation remains open and ongoing."

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