Haden Resignation Letter Blasts Burton
COLUMBIA - Former public information officer Jessie Haden's letter of resignation shed new light Wednesday on reasons why she left the Columbia Police Department.
The Columbia Daily Tribune released the letter after receiving it from an anonymous source. Columbia Police Chief Ken Burton said that he does not know who released the letter, and denies that he did it. In the letter Haden claims she left the department after Burton confirmed to KOMU in December that she was the officer involved in the affair with former Deputy Chief Tom Dresner.
"It was illegal on more than one level, unethical, and done out of self preservation on your part," Haden wrote to Burton.
Burton claims that he did nothing wrong, and defends his actions. He said Haden did not have the right to privacy as a public official and that he wouldn't lie to cover for her.
"I make it a policy to tell reporters the truth. If you ask the right question, you get the right answer," said Burton.
Burton also claims that he does not know who sent an anonymous email before the interview with KOMU, that listed Haden as the officer involved in the affair. He says he suspects it was someone within the department, but he will not investigate since the allegations proved to be true.
The city's Human Resources Department would not comment on the situation or confirm that it is investigating Burton's actions. Burton claims there is no investigation.
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