BICKNELL — Official charges have been filed against a former Bicknell police chief accused of battering an employee in the Knox County Prosecutor's Office this spring.
Terry Stremming, who was placed on administrative leave by the city’s Board of Works in April, is now facing a single charge of battery against a public safety official, a Level 6 felony.
The charges were filed on Thursday in Knox County Superior Court I by special prosecutor Daniel S. Murrie of Daviess County.
Stremming was arrested on April 23 by the Indiana State Police.
According to new court documents, Stremming was attempting to take back a laptop computer given to the prosecutor's office by one of his own officers.
Bicknell police officer Jake Fischer took his police-issued laptop to prosecutors as he believed it contained evidence, specifically body-camera footage of a conversation between the two men, in an ongoing case involving Bicknell Lt. Kevin Carroll.
Carroll has been on unpaid administrative leave since the spring of 2018 after he was arrested by ISP and the Federal Bureau of Investigation's Violent Crimes Task Force for allegedly sharing information about an undercover drug operation. He is facing charges of official misconduct and criminal recklessness, and his case is still pending in Knox County Superior Court I.
Stremming went to the prosecutor's office, court documents say, and demanded the laptop back. He attempted to remove it from investigator Rose Archer's desk, but she placed her hands on it, saying it contained evidence in an ongoing case and couldn't be removed from the office.
Stremming then allegedly “pushed Archer against the wall” and continued to try to seize the laptop. He eventually left without it.
Carroll's case remains under investigation and is being handled by Martin County prosecutor Mike Steiner.
The Bicknell Police Department, as a result, is down to just two full-time officers, so Mayor Thomas Estabrook has looked to the Knox County Sheriff's Department or help.
Estabrook has teased in recent weeks that a more permanent deal between Bicknell and the county is in the works to provide police coverage.