Foul language riddles message of Mandopoulos
By JOHN W. GOODWIN JR.
VINDICATOR TRUMBULL STAFF
WARREN — A direct order via voicemail — laced with a few expletives — led to the investigation that ultimately resulted in the pending retirement of former Police Chief John Mandopoulos.
City officials released the audio tape of Mandopoulos directing officers to not allow Gary Cicero, the city’s human resources director, in the police department. Mandopoulos also mentions the “mayor” and “director” on the taped message saying they can’t come in, either.
Cicero ultimately was searched when he entered the police department building in November for a prearranged meeting on layoffs.
The incident has led to an agreement detailing the resignation/ retirement of Mandopoulos in August. The outgoing chief will receive his full pay through Aug. 10 while on sick leave.
The city also will not object to any application Mandopoulos makes to the Ohio Police and Fire Pension Fund for disability retirement, the agreement says.
The taped message left by Mandopoulos tells officers there will be ramifications for allowing Cicero in the building, and that Cicero is to be stopped at the front gate and turned away. Mandopoulos dictates that the detective bureau is off-limits to Cicero, the mayor and law director.
Capt. Tim Roberts received the message via voicemail and played it aloud for employees in the department as it was an order from the chief.
The investigation stemming from the search also included a detailed account from Patrolman Pat Hoolihan, the officer present at the door when Cicero was searched. Hoolihan was cleared of any wrongdoing in the incident.
According to Hoolihan’s written statement, he was at the front door to the police department near the metal detector advising two females of police procedure in a different manner, with Mandopoulos not far away, when Cicero entered the building.
Hoolihan states that Mandopoulos said “search him,” but Hoolihan did not touch Cicero or order him to empty his pockets because he already had passed through the metal detector.
Mandopoulos, according to Hoolihan, then asked Cicero to empty his pockets. Nothing of significance was found, Hoolihan stated.