Town of Clayton swears in new police chief

Johnston County News

(Courtesy of the Town of Clayton)

CLAYTON, N.C. (WNCN) – Clayton swore in a former North Carolina State Bureau of Investigation deputy director as its new police chief, according to an announcement Friday night.

Greg Tart, who had been serving as the acting chief of the Clayton Police Department since November, was named the full-time chief.

“Chief Tart has done an exceptional job of leading our police department over the past few months. It is good to officially get ‘acting’ out of his title,” Town Manager JD Solomon said in a news release.

Tart worked for the SBI for nearly 30 years. When he retired from the agency in 2017, he managed eight field offices with a force of more than 600 sworn and non-sworn employees, the release said.

After retiring from the SBI, Tart served as a reserve duty deputy sheriff with the Johnston County Sheriff’s Office. He also did investigative contract work.

“This is an honor,” Tart said in the release. “I can’t tell you how humbled I am to be able to come home and be police chief. Clayton is home; it’s where I grew up, where I belong. There’s no place in this country that I’d rather be.”

The police chief job in Clayton has been the center of controversy for the past few months. Former Chief Blair Myhand was placed on administrative leave in November 2020. Tart was named acting chief days later. In January, CBS 17 spoke with Myhand and learned that he had been paid more than $20,000 while on leave. Myhand has since taken the role of police chief in Hendersonville.

An investigation was also started into the police force last year.

The town hired a firm in Nov. 2020 to conduct that probe at a cost of $18,000, Clayton town manager JD Solomon said.

“We worked this investigative process with structure and discipline,” Solomon said at a town council meeting last month.

He explained the draft report is now complete. The town’s law firm and its human resources department are in the process of confirming the details. Then it will be finalized. 

“The most general level of the draft report indicates an environment where certain forms of misbehavior were tolerated more for some people than others,” Solomon said.

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