Grantville police chief returns to duty after suspension

Grantville police chief returns to duty after suspension

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GRANTVILLE, Ga. -

The police chief in Grantville, Ga. returned to duty on Tuesday after serving a week's suspension without pay. The City Council handed down the suspension to Chief Doug Jordan after he arranged a meeting with Arizona Sheriff Joe Arpaio while on vacation.

Arpaio, known as "America's toughest sheriff," is known for his tough stance on crime.

Grantville Mayor Jim Sells said he saw no problem with the police chief's visit.

"It was about drug interdiction and how to help curb the drug problem," Sells said.

The city council suspended the chief for a week without pay because he did not follow city policy and inform the city manager about his meeting beforehand.

City Councilman Barham Lundy, who has clashed with the chief in the past, called the meeting a publicity stunt.

"He's trying to make a name for himself because if he wanted to have some resources to help him in his war on drugs, he would have gone to [Coweta County] Sheriff [Mike] Yeager ," said Lundy.

Grantville is home to about 3,500 people. There are eight people on the police force plus the chief. They say their typical crimes are domestic disputes, traffic violations and drugs.

 "We have a lot of drug programs on interstate and within the city. That's what we're trying to focus on now," said Scott Wilson, an investigator on the Grantville Police Department.

Lundy says there's no drug problem. In fact, he says Grantville doesn't even need a police department.

"Turn it over to the county. I believe Sheriff Yeager would do a better job of enforcing the law," said Lundy.

The mayor said that he's received hundreds of emails supporting the chief. Sheriff Joe has expressed his support as well.

"Don't go around suspending the police chief because he's on his own time," Arpaio said. "I presume if he went to Disneyland, he'd have to go say, ‘I'm going to Disneyland.' What kind of an outfit are they running down there?"

The council suspended the chief while the mayor was out of town.  The mayor says at the next city council meeting, he plans to try to convince council members to restore the chief's lost pay.

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