High ranking MPD officer resigns in wake of restaurant intimidation incident

A Memphis Police commander who was formerly fourth in the department's chain of command has retired as a result of a recent incident at a local restaurant.

Inspector Don Drewry, a 26-year member of the Memphis Police Department, was caught by a surveillance camera at the Pancake Shop on Summer Avenue as he told a group of people to get up and leave the table they were sitting at because he wanted it for himself.

"This is a police table," Drewry could be heard saying in the tape, aired exclusively Wednesday night on Action News 5.  "You have to leave."

But it didn't end there.  Drewry arrested two of the individuals that were sitting at the table for disorderly conduct after he heard one of them call him a "jerk."

Drewry then allegedly had officers search the pair's car for drugs by ripping out their seats.

Jonathan Simpson, one of the individuals that was arrested, said he was relieved Drewry was no longer a police officer.  Simpson spent 12 hours in jail before a judge threw out the case and released him.

"It's nice to know the system cannot work just against you with officers like Drewry, but work for you," he said.

For his actions, Drewry could face serious trouble.  Even though he retired, he is still under investigation by Memphis Police internal affairs.  He could possibly face criminal charges for what happened.

The other officers involved face possible departmental charges.

Drewry will likely face a civil suit from Simpson and his friends for personal conduct and intimidation.

"We're definitely going to take legal action," Simpson said. "I'm not sure in what direction or what we're going to do, but we do have our lawyer and we are talking."

Drewry's personnel file showed he was suspended for 10 days in 1985 after disrespecting his superiors.

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