Hayneville mayor addresses police chief's suspension - WLOX.com - The News for South Mississippi

Hayneville mayor addresses drama surrounding police chief's suspension


The Hayneville mayor and town council have decided to bring the town's police chief back immediately after a brief suspension. And now, we're learning more about why the chief was placed on leave without pay for a few days.

At Monday night's town council meeting, the mayor and council went into executive session to discuss veteran Police Chief Kelvin Mitchell and events involving the chief that played out last week.

Hayneville Mayor Kelvin Lawrence fielded questions from the media after the meeting, saying Chief Mitchell was suspended last Thursday night for insubordination after Mitchell tried to arrest the school superintendent Daniel Boyd at a Lowndes County Board of Education meeting.

"I just did not want the way he was trying to arrest the school superintendent to happen that way," Lawrence said. "That was a direct order for him to not do it the way he was planning to do it and I felt it was insubordinate for him to do that."

When asked why the police chief wanted to arrest the superintendent, the mayor responded: "That's something that I care not to talk about... I guess it was about some pending cases. That's all I can say."

The school superintendent was not arrested Thursday night, action being taken against the police chief before he could carry out the arrest.

Chief Mitchell can return to work Tuesday but only if he meets certain conditions, according to the mayor but he would not elaborate on the conditions, saying it is a personnel issue.

The police chief and school superintendent were not present at the meeting and could not be reached for comment.

The mayor said it was his first major run-in with Chief Mitchell.

In 2009, WSFA reported that Mitchell was accused of drawing his gun and threatening the Lowndes County sheriff during a task force meeting at the Butler County courthouse. Mayor Lawrence says charges in that case were never filed.

In late 2013, WSFA reported that a janitor was arrested and accused of inappropriately touching a 13-year-old girl during school hours at Hayneville Middle School in late September. School district officials said they conducted their own investigation and found no evidence of wrongdoing by the custodian. It is not clear if the case is at all related to recent current events involving the chief and school superintendent. No other information was released.

WSFA is continuing to follow this story.

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