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Spouse abuse allegations stay out of supervisor's personnel file // TRACY L. OLTMAN

Twice in the past 18 months, police have appeared at the Hillsborough County Property Appraiser's Office to arrest an employee on an outstanding criminal warrant. The first time, the warrant was for Tracy L. Oltman, chief of the commercial department and a 16-year veteran of the office.

Oltman, 44, was charged with battery after his wife complained that he choked her at the American Cowboy Co., a Tampa nightclub.

Teresa Oltman, now divorced from Tracy Oltman, subsequently called Property Appraiser Ron Alderman and complained of spouse abuse and drug dealing by Oltman.

Oltman says none of it is true.

"It's just vindictiveness," he said. "She's just trying to put a stigma on me. I'm a good Christian man, and I work hard here."

Court records show Oltman was charged with aggravated assault in 1984 after a previous wife reported that he held on to her and dragged her down the street when he was a passenger in a car. The allegations could not be substantiated, and the charges were dropped.

After Oltman remarried, Teresa Oltman sought an injunction against him in Pasco County in 1994. A judge granted the injunction after she reported that Oltman had dragged her around by her hair and slammed her to the floor. Teresa Oltman, a 5-foot-2, 100-pound Bible school teacher, also told authorities Oltman had threatened to set the house on fire and "bury me in the back yard where no one can find me."

Oltman pleaded innocent to battery on his wife. A judge found him guilty in May 1995 but withheld a formal finding of guilt on his record and sentenced him to probation, during which he underwent counseling.

None of the allegations of violence has made its way into Oltman's personnel file. A onetime building evaluator trainee with an associate's degree in fine arts, he has worked his way up through the ranks to be a $49,171-a-year department head. Oltman has made seven contributions to Alderman's past two campaigns, totaling $395.

Alderman said Oltman offered to take a voluntary drug test and passed it. He also said Oltman "has been here a long time and does a good job."

"I cannot police these people in their personal lives," Alderman added.

The other person arrested at the property appraiser's office didn't fare as well as Oltman.

Jean Whyre, a data entry supervisor, was fired after she was charged with the theft of $9.40 worth of groceries. A judge withheld adjudication on that charge. Whyre lost her job not because she had been arrested, Alderman said, but because she had lied on her civil service application about previous misdemeanor arrests for petty theft and negligent treatment of children.