facebooktwitterRSS
- Advertisement -
  • Most Commentedmost commented up
  • Most Emailedmost emailed up
  • Popularmost popular up
- Advertisement -
 

« News Home

Girard officer receives ‘last chance’



Published: Fri, March 7, 2014 @ 12:05 a.m.

Officer disciplined over teen party in his garage

By jeanne starmack

starmack@vindy.com

girard

Mayor Jim Melfi and other city leaders said they wanted to send a “strong message” when they decided on discipline for a patrol officer who was suspended after police broke up a teenage drinking party in his garage.

Officer Larry Neely, who has been on paid leave since the Feb. 8 party, will be given a “last chance” agreement and placed on 20 days’ unpaid leave, Melfi said Thursday.

“We’re sending a strong message to him and others — we have to do things the proper way here,” he said.

Melfi, Police Chief Jeff Palmer and Director of Public Services Jerry Lambert met in recent days with legal counsel to discuss Neely’s fate. The final decision on discipline rested with Melfi.

Melfi said the two-year agreement includes language that allows for Neely’s immediate termination if he does not adhere strictly to police department policies and procedures.

“These are pretty severe measures,” Melfi said.

Melfi said discipline for police officers is progressive. Neely had previous violations, according to Palmer, who said that to call his disciplinary record “extensive” is fair. A 10-day suspension was for not answering two calls one night.

Neely was not home when the party took place. Questions in an internal investigation included whether he knew about the party or other parties that police believe took place there.

“You have young people in the family. You have to be aware that these things go on,” Melfi said.

Melfi said termination was too strong for the offense.

He said the city has to have strong grounds for termination because it could be overturned on appeal in court, costing taxpayers legal fees and back pay.

“I’ve never made a rash decision that would cost the city money,” he said.

If an officer were to commit a severe offense, he could be terminated regardless of how many department violations occurred before, he and Lambert explained.

“Circumstances have to be weighed,” Lambert said.

Palmer was not available for comment.

Neely had not signed the agreement as of Thursday morning, but was expected to do so soon. He was represented in the disciplinary process by the Ohio Patrolmen’s Benevolent Association, which is Girard police’s union.


Comments

12Good4U(5 comments)posted 9 months, 2 weeks ago

This Moron needs Fired!!! Oh yeah, & his kid needs an A__ whoopin!!!

Suggest removal:

2papa1(696 comments)posted 9 months, 2 weeks ago

this guy failed to answer calls in 2012 and admitted he knew about the drug and alcohol parties? this is an example of girards finest? this is bu11$hit. how many people with good character would love to have that job? wrong decision melfi.

Suggest removal:


News
Opinion
Entertainment
Sports
Marketplace
Classifieds
Records
Discussions
Community
Help
Forms
Neighbors

HomeTerms of UsePrivacy StatementAdvertiseStaff DirectoryHelp
© 2014 Vindy.com. All rights reserved. A service of The Vindicator.
107 Vindicator Square. Youngstown, OH 44503

Phone Main: 330.747.1471 • Interactive Advertising: 330.740.2955 • Classified Advertising: 330.746.6565
Sponsored Links: Vindy Wheels | Vindy Jobs | Vindy Homes