Fort O. police chief explains decision to step down
Eight months after council appointed Jeff Holcomb as interim police chief he announced his resignation.
"Its my personal decision. I've not been told to leave, I've not been asked to leave and I've not threatened to fire any lieutenants for that matter," Holcomb says.
In march newly appointed City Manager Harold Silcox fired then Chief David Eubanks and Public Works Director Jeff Long.
Last month's election was just a reminder the controversy isn't over.
"There's a new council coming on board and they ran on the premise of restoring things that had been changed in the past," Holcomb explains.
He's talking about the return of David Eubanks as police chief along with City Manager Ron Goulart and Public Works Director Jeff Long.
"I hope we don't have a lot of radical changes and I sincerely do not believe we will," Mayor Lynn Long says.
Long could not confirm if Eubanks would be back as chief. "Who that will be, I don't know at this time," Long says.
Holcomb says voters chose new council members who ran on promises of change and he gets the message.
"I think its best, rather than go through a process or any kind of mud slinging and that kind of stuff, I think its time for all that stuff to stop. I think its time for everything to cool down, respect the fact the citizens voted in new people on the council and let the council carry through on the promises they made during the campaign. That's the right thing to do in my opinion," Holcomb says.
Critics of Holcomb say he resigned after being caught looking through an employee's personnel file, a claim Holcomb defends.
"The fact of the matter is any personal file that pertains to the police department, I don't have to have permission to go through it. I can simply look at the files, I am the department head," says Holcomb. "Frankly, its been a very tumultuous election and I'm just, frankly, wanting to move on and rid myself of these problems. I wish the best for the city."
Holcomb's resignation is effective January, 2. He says he's looking at a couple different job offers in the private sector.