Centralia Residents Divided on Police Firing

8 years 2 months 3 weeks ago Wednesday, March 23 2011 Mar 23, 2011 Wednesday, March 23, 2011 2:21:00 PM CDT March 23, 2011 in News
By: Mike Andreani
loading

CENTRALIA - Citizen's in Centralia spoke out Wednesday about the firing of Assistant Police Chief Paul Morgan. According to several citizens, including Morgan's wife Melinda Morgan, his firing came after he received information about possible misconduct by Police Chief Larry Dudgeon and reported that information to the city's mayor, Tim Grenke. This led the city council to schedule a special meeting for Wednesday night at 7:00 pm to discuss the issue.

Many citizens are divided on the issue, but many want a formal investigation so that the truth comes out. "If they do an investigation, get all the facts, and decide that the allegations were false, I'll be fine with that," Adam Griggs, a Centralia citizen said.

The meeting was scudeled as a closed door session, but many the mayor and city council decided to open the beginning of the meeting to public discussion.

"I think people are choosing sides and that's unfortunate, but I think the council and I will do what's best for the whole community here," Mayor Tim Grenke said.

Before the open segment was announced, some citizens expressed concerns about transparency. "It worries me a little that they're doing the meeting behind closed doors because the truth might not come out, but I understand the policy that says it has to be that way," Griggs said.

Support in Centralia is largely split. JR's Diner in downtown Centralia has a paper sign on its door reading "Bring Back Paul Morgan," but others support the chief's decision. The meeting Wednesday night drew crowds of supporters on both sides of this divisive issue filling the city's community room inside city hall.

And with a room full of different opinions, support was pretty evenly split.

Supporters of Chief Larry Dudgeon said they want proof of misconduct before they accept the allegations against him. But others are firm in their support for Paul Morgan who was fired earlier this week after informing the mayor about evidence he received of misconduct by Dudgeon.

After the public segment of the meeting, the council did go into a private section to further discuss the issue. But while all sides have different stories, most people believe the same solution will solve the problem.

Several former police officers who support Paul Morgan said they think the way to find out what, if any of the allegations are true is to conduct a proper investigation.

And some who back the chief agree. "I'm with you, we do need an investigation, because justice must be found," Bill Ladwig, a part-time police officer and friend of Dudgeon said.

Now, the citizens of Centralia await the council's final decision on what will happen next which should come in the next few days.

More News

Grid
List
COLUMBIA - The missing 5-year-old girl found safe in North Carolina this week is now back in her father's custody.... More >>
4 hours ago Saturday, June 15 2019 Jun 15, 2019 Saturday, June 15, 2019 8:59:00 PM CDT June 15, 2019 in News
MORGAN COUNTY - Five people were injured when a passenger boat exploded on the Lake of the Ozarks Saturday afternoon.... More >>
6 hours ago Saturday, June 15 2019 Jun 15, 2019 Saturday, June 15, 2019 6:56:00 PM CDT June 15, 2019 in News
COOPER COUNTY - One man is dead and another injured after a two vehicle collision in Cooper County Friday afternoon.... More >>
9 hours ago Saturday, June 15 2019 Jun 15, 2019 Saturday, June 15, 2019 4:20:47 PM CDT June 15, 2019 in News
HATTON - One man is in custody after leading Callaway County Sheriff's deputies on a chase near Hatton Friday evening.... More >>
10 hours ago Saturday, June 15 2019 Jun 15, 2019 Saturday, June 15, 2019 3:04:00 PM CDT June 15, 2019 in News
COLUMBIA - Workers and volunteers began cleaning up Cooper’s Landing Saturday after recent flooding forced them to close down their... More >>
10 hours ago Saturday, June 15 2019 Jun 15, 2019 Saturday, June 15, 2019 3:04:00 PM CDT June 15, 2019 in News
COLUMBIA - Two more women were arrested in connection to the case of a missing Boone County child who was... More >>
15 hours ago Saturday, June 15 2019 Jun 15, 2019 Saturday, June 15, 2019 10:12:00 AM CDT June 15, 2019 in News
COLUMBIA - Cooper's Landing is asking people to help them clean up after recent flooding. The restaurant closed nearly... More >>
1 day ago Friday, June 14 2019 Jun 14, 2019 Friday, June 14, 2019 11:10:00 PM CDT June 14, 2019 in Continuous News
MEXICO - Ayanna Shivers made history on April 8 when the Mexico City Council elected her mayor. Shivers is... More >>
1 day ago Friday, June 14 2019 Jun 14, 2019 Friday, June 14, 2019 10:58:00 PM CDT June 14, 2019 in News
RUSSELLVILLE - The volunteer fire department in Russellville is celebrating after receiving new tires for one of its trucks. ... More >>
1 day ago Friday, June 14 2019 Jun 14, 2019 Friday, June 14, 2019 9:42:00 PM CDT June 14, 2019 in News
COLUMBIA - A Chariton County man charged with involuntary manslaughter in the death of his fiance has pleaded not guilty.... More >>
1 day ago Friday, June 14 2019 Jun 14, 2019 Friday, June 14, 2019 9:04:00 PM CDT June 14, 2019 in News
COLUMBIA - People living along West Broadway in Columbia are joining forces to protect three 100 year old houses. ... More >>
1 day ago Friday, June 14 2019 Jun 14, 2019 Friday, June 14, 2019 7:08:00 PM CDT June 14, 2019 in News
JEFFERSON CITY – Employees at Veterans United Home Loans donated $100,000 Friday to the American Red Cross for tornado and... More >>
1 day ago Friday, June 14 2019 Jun 14, 2019 Friday, June 14, 2019 6:44:00 PM CDT June 14, 2019 in News
COLUMBIA - Skateboard enthusiasts say there's no reason for newbies to be afraid of taking part in Saturday's Shred Fest.... More >>
1 day ago Friday, June 14 2019 Jun 14, 2019 Friday, June 14, 2019 6:21:00 PM CDT June 14, 2019 in News
CALIFORNIA - A Fortuna man who previously pleaded guilty to killing a baby and burning the body asked to withdraw... More >>
1 day ago Friday, June 14 2019 Jun 14, 2019 Friday, June 14, 2019 4:12:00 PM CDT June 14, 2019 in Top Stories
JEFFERSON CITY - Preservationists in the capital city are implementing a plan to avoid demolition of historic buildings hit by... More >>
1 day ago Friday, June 14 2019 Jun 14, 2019 Friday, June 14, 2019 2:38:00 PM CDT June 14, 2019 in Top Stories
COLUMBIA - A neighborhood block party the Columbia Parks and Recreation Department will host Saturday aims to bring the neighborhood... More >>
1 day ago Friday, June 14 2019 Jun 14, 2019 Friday, June 14, 2019 2:15:00 PM CDT June 14, 2019 in News
COLUMBIA - Columbia Police arrested a man early Friday in connection to an ongoing drug investigation. Officers said they... More >>
1 day ago Friday, June 14 2019 Jun 14, 2019 Friday, June 14, 2019 1:57:00 PM CDT June 14, 2019 in News
COLUMBIA - Police arrested a man Thursday after he reportedly tried to set a fire at the home of his... More >>
1 day ago Friday, June 14 2019 Jun 14, 2019 Friday, June 14, 2019 12:59:00 PM CDT June 14, 2019 in News
Columbia, MO
Broken Clouds 76°
2am 71°
3am 70°
4am 69°
5am 69°