Photo: MNPD Officer Andrew Delke
Photo Credit: MNPD / Background photo – Josh Beasley / CC
Published July 6, 2021
The Tennessee Conservative [By Jason Vaughn] –
On July 1, a former Metro police officer, Andrew Delke, pleaded guilty to voluntary manslaughter in a 2018 case that involved the shooting of Daniel Hambrick. Delke was sentenced to three years in prison, but according to his lawyer, he may only serve 18 months.
In 2018, Delke was charged with first-degree murder for Hambrick’s death, after shooting him three times. The trial was set to take place during this month. However, on Thursday, District Attorney Glenn Funk and Delke’s legal team agreed to a plea deal. The deal reduced Delke’s charge, which originally could have been life in prison.
Delke is on precautionary observation until being sent to a DDC Restrictive Housing Unit. He will be assigned to his own cell and attend recreation time alone. According to the Davidson County Sheriff’s Office, this is common for cases such as this one.
During the hearing, Delke read from a statement to apologize to the Hambrick family.
“I am pleading guilty today because I recognize that my use of deadly force was not reasonably necessary under all the circumstances,” he said. “I recognize what happened on July 26, 2018, was tragic. Mrs. Hambrick lost her son that day. And I am responsible for her loss. … I am deeply sorry for the harm my actions caused and I hope that Mr. Hambrick’s family will obtain some comfort for my acceptance of responsibility and my guilty plea today.”
According to Assistant District Attorney Ronald Dowdy, if Delke had gone to court the evidence would have found the “shooting was not reasonably necessary.”
Vickie Hambrick’s lawyer, Joy Kimbrough, said she had not been made aware of the plea deal beforehand. Kimbrough asked for Judge Watkins to reject the deal because Mrs. Hambrick had waited for three years.
Kimbrough said, “That’s the only bit, the only semblance of any justice she may receive for the three bullets that struck and killed her son.”
Chaos erupted in the courtroom after the plea deal was accepted, and protestors gathered outside the A.A. Birch Building on Friday morning.
“I hate you. I hate you. I don’t accept no apology,” Mrs. Hambrick shouted.
Other family members and supporters joined in the shouting, and the courtroom had to be cleared out for nearly thirty minutes.
John Drake, the Metro Nashville Police Chief, released a statement regarding Delke’s plea.
“Andrew Delke resigned from the Metropolitan Nashville Police Department on Thursday, July 1,” the statement reads. “Today’s guilty plea ends three years of waiting by the Hambrick Family, the Delke family, our police department, and Nashville as a whole. It has been a difficult three years for many, and I again express condolences to the relatives of Daniel Hambrick over his loss. It is my hope that with today’s court action, we can all continue to move forward, knowing that we cannot undo the events of July 26, 2018. My clear priorities continue to be precision policing, de-escalation, and strengthening community partnerships. Our department has and continues to evolve to best serve all of Nashville.”
About the Author:
Jason Vaughn, Media Coordinator for The Tennessee Conservative
Jason previously worked for a legacy publishing company based in Crossville, TN in a variety of roles through his career. Most recently, he served as Deputy Directory for their flagship publication. Prior, he was a freelance journalist writing articles that appeared in the Herald Citizen and the Crossville Chronicle among others. He graduated from Tennessee Technological University with a Bachelor’s in English-Journalism, with minors in Broadcast Journalism and History. Contact Jason at news@TennesseeConservativeNews.com