….I must be traveling on, now…..
What is truly amazing is how long the allegations of now former Chief Darren Freeman choking a handcuffed man took to break in the media. Guess who’s back folks.
THE INVESTIGATORS: Bay St. Louis police chief resigns amid brutality allegation ~ Wes Muller, Investigative Producer WAFB
Those following Slabbed’s twitter account were in the loop since last Friday evening that something major was going down with the scandal ridden Bay PD. Lana Noonan noted the irony of the word leaking out on the exact date one year ago that Chief Denardo took his own life in the parking lot at the police station.
I’ll back the time period up to late August on the original leaks as Slabbed began receiving tips about major scandal brewing at Bay City Hall on August 30, 2017. To the extent this latest choking incident happened in May, 2017, it has been held close inside the police department for months. The optics can’t get much worse.
This is what I do know and this bit of wisdom I shared months ago with select local civic leaders because there was a major red flag on Mr. Freeman’s resume that was ignored. Wes gives us a clue:
Freeman, who has been on the job less than a year, was hired as chief to reform the department which suffered a series of embarrassing scandals and the late Chief Mike De Nardo’s suicide. His resume boasts serving as the head of internal affairs for the Mississippi Highway Patrol.
I understand some of y’all are scratching your heads going “huh” but for those of us that followed the multitude of embarrassing revelations involving DPS that have broke in the Jackson media over the past year……here is a sampling:
DPS settles discrimination suit for $84,474 ~ Jackson Jambalaya
Frankly, it is hard to take the Governor’s comments seriously. There is a culture of racism, sexism, and just plain dumbism at Mississippi state law enforcement agencies. JJ has reported these stories since 2013 yet the Governor only takes action when gasp, the Clarion-Ledger reports them. A tree apparently makes no sound unless the “state newspaper” reports it in his universe. The good ole boys don’t see anything wrong with the behavior that created these lawsuits. They probably think it’s funny and rates an 8 on the Perkins scale. The leadership at these agencies has been weak for quite some time. Leaders are not held accountable. Complaints and lawsuits proliferate as basic HR principles are repeatedly ignored. A criminal suspect probably has more protection than a woman working at these agencies. However, it is nice to see the Governor finally step up to the plate. It remains to be seen if he will actually take a swing at the problem.
More links at JJ:
Training Director sues DPS for retaliation
The Clarion Ledger also has a treasure trove of reporting on DPS, here is an example:
2nd DPS official retires after lawsuit settlement ~ Geoff Pender
Each of the above links document news that has happened since Chief Denardo’s suicide last year. I do not think the answer to the problems plaguing the Bay PD can be fixed by someone out of DPS HQ in Jackson. The Bay needs someone from a reputable large local law enforcement agency than will clean up these kind of problems instead of multiplying them. Luckily for the Bay such a person exists that was in the “top 4” candidate pool from which former Mayor Fillingame picked Mr. Freeman back in January but lets not get ahead of ourselves.