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So much for chivalry
Ex-lover sparks state investigation of  Children's Community Service chief in Cookeville

Memphis building inspector sends nude photos of Sue Standifer, allegations of misuse of funds, to state investigators
Editor of The Putnam Pit

COOKEVILLE, Tenn. -- Sue Standifer, executive director of the Upper Cumberland Children's Community Service Agency, may have used public funds to pay for her own sexual getaways with a married man, according to allegations that have led to a state criminal investigation.

Albert Wesson claims Standifer carried on a love affair with him for five years, during which she sought reimbursement by the state for a plane ticket she bought him to accompany her to Washington, D.C., and for hotel rooms she rented in Nashville solely for their romantic liaison. The money could otherwise have helped children in need, he said

In correspondence to The Putnam Pit and state officials, Wesson, a building inspector for the Memphis Fire Department's anti-neglect department, sent naked photos of the woman and questioned whether she was of sufficient character to head an agency responsible for children's welfare. In an interview with The Putnam Pit, Wesson alleges Standifer destroyed his marriage.

Wesson said the liaison lasted until about six months ago.

The Tennessee Department of Children's Services refused to honor a Putnam Pit request under the state's open records law to inspect Standifer's expense forms, "because the subject involves an ongoing criminal investigation," said Ava Philson, DCS public information officer.

Standifer denied the allegations in a telephone call from The Pit, and referred further questions to the DCS.

On Thursday, May 18, Wesson refused to discuss whether he knew the money Standifer allegedly spent was illegal when he accepted transportation and stayed with her in state-paid hotel rooms.

"I really don't want to comment," Wesson said Thursday during a call while he was returning from a court appearance in Cookeville General Sessions Court, where Standifer filed for a protection order.

"I don't want to risk going to jail."

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