Gulfport fire chief to remain in charge after alleged assault

Gulfport fire chief to remain in charge after alleged assault
Gulfport Fire Chief Michael Beyerstedt (Source: City of Gulfport)

GULFPORT, MS (WLOX) - Gulfport Fire Chief Mike Beyerstedt will remain in charge of the city's fire services after being accused of head-butting an on-duty employee at a city fire station.

A statement issued Wednesday morning by Gulfport's chief administrative officer John R. Kelly said:

The administration has completed its investigation of the incident involving Fire Chief Mike Beyerstedt and two other firemen from the department. The investigation revealed no conclusive evidence of an assault of any kind.  There was evidence that Chief Beyerstedt acted in a manner and made comments that were unbecoming of a leader and of a city department head. Appropriate disciplinary action will be taken. 

Chief Beyerstedt is a very capable and an effective leader and continues to have the confidence and support of this administration.

The investigation into the alleged incident began in early April after the city says authorities received a complaint from someone working in the fire department. According to the police report, the fire chief was accused of head-butting Timothy Holliman. The report states, "the suspect became enraged in front of the complainant and the witness, cursing and lunging at the complainant causing the suspect's head to come in contact with the complainant."

Multiple sources close to Chief Beyerstedt told WLOX News that the incident has significantly hurt the morale of the department.

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