Sturgeon police chief calls accusations a "witch hunt"

6 months 5 days 3 hours ago Friday, March 17 2017 Mar 17, 2017 Friday, March 17, 2017 2:38:00 PM CDT March 17, 2017 in News
By: Zara McDowell and Karla Valcourt, KOMU 8 Reporters
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COLUMBIA - Sturgeon Police Chief Greg Halderman said he was 'blindsided' when Mayor Gene Kelly brought a sealed manila envelope to Halderman's house on his day off, accusing him of harassment, drinking on the job and being verbally abusive with suspects.

The envelope contained a 23-page document asking Halderman to resign or attend a hearing on Monday, March 27. 
 
The document shows four allegations against Halderman from 2014-2017. Halderman said the allegations are 'bogus'.
 
The documents say:
 
February 2014, "Chief Halderman admitted to making inappropriate and offensive comments to a minor female Chief Halderman admitted to getting into the vehicle of the minor female without her permission. The minor female felt uncomfortable with Chief Halderman's inappropriate and offensive comments. This had happened on several occasions. When Chief Halderman entered the minor female's vehicle, she became extremely uncomfortable."
 
January 2015: "Chief Halderman purposely pointed a hand gun at a co-worker's face, making the co-worker very uncomfortable and afraid for his safety."
 
May 2016: "Chief Halderman was contacted by Boone County Joint Communications with a request to respond to a 911 emergency call in the City of Sturgeon. Chief Halderman responded by stating he "had been drinking and that he wasn't supposed to be on tonight". Chief Halderman responded to the scene of the 911 call after admitting he had been drinking alcohol."
 
February 2017: "Chief Halderman appeared at the Boone County Jail to interview three suspects regarding crimes that occurred in the City of Sturgeon. Chief Halderman behaved in an unprofessional manner by harassing and verbally abusing three prisoners, by yelling at them, swearing at them and threatening them with prison time. This agitated the prisoners and made the job of the staff at the Boone County Jail more difficult. Three Boone County Sheriff's deputies made written reports describing the Chief's unprofessional behavior. A Boone County Sheriff's Deputy reported that he may have smelled intoxicants on Chief Halderman's breath at that time."
 
Halderman said he only admits to the last allegation.
 
The document presents the following 'just cause' for Halderman's removal:
  • You are unable to perform your duties with reasonable competence or reasonable safety as a result of alcohol abuse
  • You have committed acts, while engaged in the performance of your duties, that constitute a reckless disregard for the safety of the public or another law enforcement officer
  • You are in violation of written established employment policy
Halderman can choose to resign from the position before the hearing on March 27. He said he is exploring his legal options and has no plans to resign. 
 
"I have good rapport with the community," Halderman said. "The people in this community have let me know they want me to stay. They want me to fight it."
 
Anthony Jones, a friend of Halderman, said, "Greg is the best police chief we've ever had," Jones said. "Everybody loves him, so I don't understand why they're trying to do this. It makes no sense."
 
 

 

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