Marco Island Police investigate an officer’s missing personnel file information
An officer for Marco Island Police Dept. says somebody took parts of his personnel file. Now, the department is bringing in outside help to investigate.
Marco Island is a beautiful place with a low crime rate. That is what brought Drew Richard MaGuire to the area, after contributing 30 years to law enforcement in New Jersey.
“It’s got to be a difficult place to work at a job where there’s not much crime,” MaGuire said. “If that’s what you want to do and you want to fight crime for a living.”
In the past year, the MIPD has dealt with allegations of misconduct, officers having sex on the job, the chief being forced to resign because of it and now an officer making allegations about the mishandling of personnel files.
David Baer, the interim chief, sent an email to media outlets, to be proactive and transparent. He said:
An informed public often finds itself in a position to trust or build trust in its government. With this concept in mind, I would like to brief you on an ongoing situation with the Marco Island Police Department. On August 5th, a local media representative made a public records request for communications between city officials, as well as copies of documents that were allegedly removed from a Department member’s personnel file. A preliminary review of the circumstances described leads me to believe the question(s) justify a further formal inquiry. I have briefed the City Manager and been in communication with the City Attorney, who concurs with my course of action to date. It is far too early to suggest any policy violations or policy failures. The purpose of this communication is to provide early and detailed information, to prevent surprises with corresponding concern and/or disappointment due to a lack of information – in the spirit of proactive transparency.
City Manager Mike McNess said an officer made allegations that someone added and removed materials from employee files without going through the proper process and the city wanted to be open with the public about the ongoing investigation.
“In the environment we’re in,” McNess said, “we owe this thing a clear investigation with a clear record of who did what, when and why.”
McNess told WINK News that he expects the investigation to be completed soon. Also, the new chief, who starts in a couple of weeks, can look at the investigation with an outside perspective to see if any further action needs to be taken.