Hamilton County Commission candidate Brent Lambert, who is also Mayor of East Ridge, said Monday that his opponent Tim Boyd threatened him.
“I was surprised when he said, ‘If you don’t drop out of the race, I will ruin you and your job,'” Lambert said at a news conference.
In the phone call, which Lambert played for the media, Boyd told Lambert that his political team found “factual information” that made Lambert look unethical.
Boyd told Lambert he should drop out of the race to avoid having the information made public.
“I said, ‘I’d like to see Brent pull out rather than us expose it,'” Boyd said in the recording. “My team is going to have a meeting Sunday and decide what we’re going to do with the information…You have to know what we’re talking about it…”
Lambert reported Boyd to the District Attorney, who passed the information along to the TBI.
That resulted in an extortion indictment for Boyd.
On Monday, Boyd’s attorney Davis Lundy released a statement criticizing Lambert for having a news conference and playing the recording.
In part, the statement said:
As a political candidate, Lambert is holding a news conference today, he says, to release a conversation that he secretly recorded of a political opponent. Puzzlingly, Mr. Lambert initiated the call to Commissioner Tim Boyd for the purpose of recording him.
This act by Mr. Lambert, followed by an indictment, and now followed by his announcement that he will release evidence in a pending criminal case, is a mockery of our legal system. Mr. Lambert and those individuals who are helping him with his threats against Commissioner Tim Boyd should be held accountable for their actions.
My law office will be representing Commissioner Tim Boyd in a court of law on Friday, and we will ask the court to set this matter for trial at the earliest possible opportunity so that we may do our part to seek justice on behalf of Commissioner Tim Boyd and to hold political candidate Brent Lambert accountable for his actions in this matter.
East Ridge Online also reported that the Chattanooga Visitor’s Bureau—which Boyd heavily criticized recently—said it had nothing to do with the commissioner’s indictment.