MARION, Ark. — Marion Police Chief Gary Kelley confirmed Tuesday that there is an investigation against one of the department’s officers, but he did not release the officer’s name.
WREG has been asking Marion officials for days about allegations of an internal investigation involving one of their officers.
Kelley released this statement:
“I was notified of an incident involving an officer within the Marion Police Department. After an internal investigation, the officer was suspended and this matter was referred to the Arkansas State Police. Because this is an ongoing criminal investigation by the State Police, I’m sure you understand there isn’t anything more that I can say at this time.”
Arkansas State Police said there’s nothing more they can release.
“They’re just trying to protect the situation and spare everybody involved,” one Marion woman said.
That was the perception Tuesday in Marion, even as the police chief finally made a public statement about the accusations for the first time.
“I don’t know anything about it,” another woman said.
But that’s part of the problem; people in Marion tell us city officials have buried these issues, hoping to keep their town out of the headlines.
“It’s backfiring,” a resident said.
WREG went to both the mayor’s office and the police department to try to get more information, but Mayor Frank Fogleman wasn’t there and a clerk at the police department would only hand over a paper copy of the statement.
Now, people are divided about the way the administration is handling this..
“There ain’t no problem, nothing like that,” one man said.
“It’s a mistake, you gotta have transparency in your government and have the confidence of your people. That’s not gonna happen,” another woman said.
WREG filed a Freedom of Information Act request with Marion Police to get a copy of the accused officer’s personnel file.