Former Gulfport Chief of Police weighs in on McClung traffic stop

Former Gulfport Chief of Police weighs in on McClung traffic stop

BILOXI, MS (WLOX) - With the future of Moss Point Chief of Police Art McClung up in the air, former Gulfport Police Chief Alan Weatherford weighed in on the controversial traffic stop.

"It was sickening," Weatherford said.

That was the immediate reaction from Alan Weatherford after watching the dash cam video of the traffic stop involving Art McClung.

After watching Pascagoula officers say to McClung in the dash cam video, "Does he smell like alcohol? Oh, yeah, he's toast," Weatherford says he doesn't think the Moss Point chief should have been taken home with no charges or citations.

"They made the call to not arrest him. I think he should have been formally charged," said Weatherford. "In fact, if he was impaired doing 109, there's no reason why."

Weatherford relates all too well to a situation like this following the loss of his daughter five years ago.

"She got killed by a drunk driver who was driving excessively," Weatherford said. "So those two things, that's what I immediately thought of."

Pascagoula Police Chief Kenny Johnson stood by his decision to advise officers to take McClung home, but Weatherford thinks Johnson should have handled it differently. However, he says he can relate to getting a tough call after hours.

"The first thing that I would have said is, 'Do your job, treat him like anybody else,'" said Weatherford. " I'm disappointed in his decision and it frustrates me."

Now, more than a month after McClung was pulled over in Pascagoula, Weatherford is anxious to hear more from the police chief about what happened.

"I would hope that the chief would step forward and give some statement to his level of impairment, the way he felt that day."

As for the Pascagoula officers turning off the audio on the dash cam video, Weatherford said he didn't have a problem with it under the circumstances.

"I think the video should be rolling anytime, but if you have a supervisor that needs to talk to an officer or whatever the case may be or there's an exception, then there should be that exception in the policy," Weatherford said.

Moss Point Mayor Billy Broomfield told WLOX earlier in the week that he hopes a decision will be made on McClung's future at the next board meeting on Tuesday.

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