Updated: Tip received by the US Bureau of Alcohol Tobacco Firearms and Explosives led to Chief Denardo’s Suspension

The rumor mill has been going full tilt since Chief Denardo’s suicide about this time yesterday. None of the rumors have been 100% correct but I have spoken with two people outside of City government that were close to the Chief along with a number of off record interviews I will not go into but this much we do know now officially, that the ATF had received “unsubstantiated criminal intelligence” about the Chief but had not opened a formal investigation when the Chief tragically took his own life. Kevin McGill and Rebecca Santana have the skinny for the AP:

“ATF had not opened a formal investigation but had received to this point unsubstantiated criminal intelligence regarding the chief’s activities,” Denham said.

“We had not approached him. We had not confronted him.”

He said barring DeNardo’s death, the agency would have moved forward to investigate and confirm or dispel the intelligence. He could not give details on what the intelligence was about.

Slabbed has been told a bit more about the subject matter but it has not been officially confirmed. I will say this, the ethical tone for an entity is set at the top. Auditors are taught that time and again, if the CEO is unethical then they will have lots of company in their organization. At DMR we saw that exact scenario in the story Slabbed broke about the brother in law contracting in the artificial reef program. This concept will again manifest itself in the Bay. I will disclose this, indications strongly are that the Chief is not alone in terms of potential wrongdoing as other current and/or former employees have also been implicated to the ATF and as the facts bubble up, its likely the Bay will be shaken to its core. There is no way to candy coat it folks.

But that’s not all and it gets potentially worse. To get a clue on the worse we need to visit with Wes Muller’s story from this morning for the Sun Herald:

Falgout said he had been receiving calls and messages of concern from other city officials since news of De Nardo’s death broke.

He said one important concern was the whereabouts and security of De Nardo’s files pertaining to certain investigations, as well as other general police department cases.

De Nardo was known to keep meticulous notes and records pertaining to the U.S. Department of Justice police forfeitures investigation. The city came under investigation by the DOJ and the State Auditor’s Office regarding the apparent mishandling of $300,000 in federal money.

The council, in the past, relied on De Nardo’s records when making decisions regarding that case.

That said the local rumor mill has outrun what we now know for certain. Earlier this afternoon I spoke with Council President Falgout, who had no comment on the ATF receiving information on the operations of the Bay PD or Chief Denardo’s files but he did tell Slabbed New Media there were no emergency Council meetings scheduled regarding City personnel as Slabbed reported earlier as a developing rumor on Twitter. Slabbed has confirmed that the Chief Denardo’s files have been secured. How the contents of those files manifest themselves down the road is the place to be watching. There is more to come.

Update

The AP has updated its story and breaks more bad news:

Hancock County Chief Deputy Don Bass told The Associated Press that Bay St. Louis police chief Mike DeNardo illegally sold one city-owned assault rifle, and that authorities were looking into allegations that other city-owned weapons were sold.

4 thoughts on “Updated: Tip received by the US Bureau of Alcohol Tobacco Firearms and Explosives led to Chief Denardo’s Suspension”

    1. Given Chief’s actions, does it matter if the tip to the ATF were bull?

      People in officialdom are being very tight lipped, likely because of the active investigation which involves the MBI, HCSO and certainly now the ATF/FBI.

      After all these years I’ve had two unanswered questions (in my mind) involving problems in the overall administration of justice in Bay St Louis that have stuck with me that I think may be answered as the operations of the Police Department are scrutinized. Ironically neither question involved the Chief.

      In late 2009 what would become the Jeff Parish Political Corruption Scandal broke because the Parish Prez in another Parish cut a shit house deal to buy a new car for his mistress with bribes and public funds. Whether you call it serendipity or just an example Nassim Taleb’s black swan, Pandora’s box in the Bay has been opened and my instincts as a Citizen journalist is it will lead to some strange places.

  1. All major problems start at the top. What we have is a bonafide “Culture of Corruption “! Lies, deception, poor to terrible legal advice with intent to deceive Etc…..building dept corruption, court room fixing, malicious prosecution, drug test cover ups, purchasing issues, docket payment issues, illegal raises, mismanagement of city owned rentals including questions about deposits and cash payments, lack of equipment inventory and just bad stewardship of the taxpayers equipment, MLS Training at thousands of dollars with no accountability by the elected officials and no appreciable result as reference to the above, payroll fraud at all levels to include retired building, fire and public works officials who stayed on the payroll nearly a year because they did not have to document time away from work, asst police chief kept her police vehicle months after her departure, Right now I would bet les has accrued 95% of his time, lil les daddy said should have been reeled in long ago unqualified cronies holding high level positions? Who would have figured what is happening now?

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