JENNINGS — Recently terminated Police Chief Vincent Robinson will receive a hearing with the Jennings Town Council tonight.
At the council’s April 21 meeting, Robinson requested the termination hearing. He had 10 days to appeal the decision to the council following the April 17 termination.
Robinson also told the council that he would be hiring a lawyer.
The council set the hearing for April 30 at 7 p.m.
“That’s fine and I appreciate that,” Robinson said.
Also during the meeting, council members Samantha Prueter and Jerry Pittman voiced their displeasure with the termination.
“The town manager firing the chief is conflicting,” Prueter said.
Emergency meeting held
The council, or at least three members of it, held an emergency meeting April 23 that other members as well as the town manager and town attorney believed had been canceled.
The meeting was called that morning to discuss the termination of David Gause, the town’s water and sewer supervisor.
However, Town Attorney Tom Stone in discussion during the day with Mayor John Prine and other council members determined that termination was not an emergency.
But Prueter, Pittman and Felicia Collins still held the meeting.
Stone, during a phone call at the beginning of the meeting, said they had enough for a quorum, however he advised against any action taking place during the meeting.
Pittman stated in the meeting that he wanted to reinstate Gause’s employment. Jeffrey Totty, Gause’s attorney, then told the council that was a wrongful termination with no explanation as to the termination, lack of equal employment opportunity, as well as the fact that Gause is certified for his position and had a “spotless” record in his 11 years with the town.
The three voted unanimously to reinstate Gause at 7 a.m. the following day.
The council members also voiced their displeasure with the termination of Vincent Robinson as police chief as well as employing former Town Clerk Christy Smith to help train the new clerk.
In addition to the confusion over the cancellation of the meeting, a posted notice of the meeting at Town Hall also disappeared prior to the start of the meeting.
Pittman and Prueter stated it was there after the zoning meeting that took place preceding the emergency meeting. Mark Prueter stated that the notice was seen in a trash can.
Video surveillance from town hall, viewed Friday, showed that Pittman removed the notice for the meeting and discarded of it.