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City of Sturgeon Alderman releases statement on Chief Halderman

STURGEON, Mo. - City of Sturgeon Alderman Ward I Tyler Patterson has released an official statement about Sturgeon Chief of Police Greg Halderman.

Patterson opened his statement by addressing his lack of response to Halderman's employment due to legal counsel. Patterson went into detail about the events leading up to Halderman's hearing, scheduled for March 27.

Patterson also took the opportunity to address some of the concerns surrounding Halderman's employment. "It is false that I, or anyone else on the Board of Alderman, wants to fire Chief Halderman to make room for my friend’s wife to become the next police chief.  I have had no discussions with anyone regarding who the next police chief would be in the event of Chief Halderman’s removal," said Patterson.

You can read Patterson's entire statement below:

"Statement from City of Sturgeon Alderman Ward 1 Tyler Patterson

In recent days, there have been many reports in the media regarding the City of Sturgeon and its relationship with Sturgeon Chief of Police, Greg Halderman.  I, on the advice of legal counsel, have maintained no comment on this matter in order to protect the Chief’s personal employment information.  However, it has become apparent that the Chief has disclosed documents and information regarding the City’s consideration of his removal as Police Chief.  Since the Chief no longer has a reasonable expectation of privacy in the documents he has disclosed, specifically the Notice of Removal delivered to him on March 15, 2017, I feel it appropriate to correct reports I have seen in the news.

On February 25th, 2017, I and other City of Sturgeon Alderman were made aware of an incident at the Boone County Jail regarding our Police Chief, Greg Halderman.  Three Boone County Sheriff’s Deputies delivered to me their reports of unprofessional conduct, and possible intoxication of Chief Halderman at the jail on February 20, 2017. I called for a closed meeting of the Board of Alderman to inform them of these reports.  We also reviewed previous reports of unprofessional conduct at that time. 

On March 7, 2017, the Board of Alderman delegated me to consult with City Attorney, Jeff Kays on the proper protocol for removal of a police chief. No final decision on the removal had been made. Jeff Kays requested that I bring relevant documents regarding previous complaints to our meeting.  On March 9, 2017, I requested access to the Chief’s file from our Custodian of Records, our City Clerk, Donna Tracy.  I was given the key and I informed the Custodian that I was taking the file to the City Attorney’s office for a meeting on official city business.  Moments after I left City Hall with the file, I was instructed by Mayor Gene Kelly to return the file, and make copies of the pertinent documents for review with the City Attorney.  My actions in this regard were lawful, except that now I have learned that I should have a written authorization from the Custodian of Records before removing the file from City Hall.

On or about March 10, 2017, Mayor Kelly scheduled a closed meeting of the Board of Alderman to discuss scheduling a removal hearing for Chief Halderman.  I believe that same day I also became aware that Chief Halderman may have filed a complaint with the Missouri Attorney General regarding my handling of his employment file.  I never knew for sure a complaint had been filed until a representative of the Missouri Attorney General contacted me on March 17, 2017. At that time, I responded to the complaint in a telephone interview.  I was told that no disciplinary action is likely, the Attorney Generals office will more than likely send information regarding the manner that way the office and alderman have better knowledge towards the Sunshine Law, as my intent with the file was to conduct official city business with the city attorney. 

Chief Halderman’s assertion that the Alderman’s actions in scheduling a removal hearing in retaliation for his Attorney General complaint against me are demonstrably false.  It is my belief that Chief Halderman filed his Attorney General complaint against me in retaliation for the Board meeting to discuss his employment with the City of Sturgeon.

It is false that I, or anyone else on the Board of Alderman, wants to fire Chief Halderman to make room for my friend’s wife to become the next police chief.  I have had no discussions with anyone regarding who the next police chief would be in the event of Chief Halderman’s removal.

It is also false that I, or anyone else on the Board of Alderman are on a “witch hunt” to fire our Chief.  We did not seek out these complaints against our Chief, they were given to us by other concerned citizens in the City of Sturgeon and Boone County.  Although removing the Chief may not be politically popular as has been reported in the media, for us at this time, we feel we are duty bound to perform our due diligence to look after the best interests of the City of Sturgeon in light of these complaints.

I, at this time, will reserve all further comments on this issue until after Chief Halderman is given his opportunity for a hearing before the Board of Alderman pursuant to Missouri State Law.

Best Regards,

 

Tyler J. Patterson"

 


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