Gibbons was out of town when the sensational story of a plot against the mayor surfaced.
In a letter to Wally Kirby of the Tennessee District Attorneys General Conference, Gibbons notes that he has two conflicts of interest in regards to the case.
The letter reads:
"Several of the alleged participants in the alleged plot are significant financial contributors to my campaign committee. In addition, on several occasions, [Gwen] Smith has contacted a high-ranking law enforcement official who reports directly to me seeking, unsuccessfully, to become an informant.
"For both of these reasons, in order to avoid any appearance of partiality in the handling of this matter, I am requesting appointment by you of a special prosecutor (1) to determine whether an investigation is warranted, (2) to initiate an investigation by the appropriate agency or agencies if appropriate, and (3) if there is an investigation, to determine whether any prosecution is warranted and to handle any such prosecution."