Louisa a Mess

After two firings of police chiefs in the past few weeks, Louisa town manager George E. Morrison III has resigned. Former police chief John Cetrulo, who was demoted to lieutenant several weeks ago and fired on Tuesday, had threatened to open a probe into Morrison prior to Cetrulo’s dismissal, and believes that is part of why he was fired. Morrison claims that his resignation from his two-year job has nothing to do with the police disputes, and says it’s just “bad timing.” The Progress’ Austin Graham has the recent story on the firing of the former chief, plus today’s story about Morrison’s resignation.

3 thoughts on “Louisa a Mess”

  1. I did a little research into the Town of Louisa Police Department. First of all, I read the town charter for the Town of Louisa, and it states,

    "Appointive Officers.

    4.1. Appointment.

    The Town Council may appoint such officers of the Town as they deem necessary. Such officers may include, but shall not be limited to, a Town Manager, a Town Clerk, a Town Attorney. a Town Treasurer, a Town Sergeant, Special Police Officers, and justices of the Peace. The enumeration of officers in this section shall not be construed to require the appointment of any of such officers herein named. Officers appointed by the Town Council shall perform such duties as may be specified in this Charter, by the laws of the Commonwealth, or by the Town Council. (1972, c. 68)"

    Notice that no where in their charter are they even permitted to have a "Chief of Police" so-to-speak. They are permitted to have a "Town Sergeant" which was what the former Town Sgt. Ashland Fortune went by before he was Sheriff of the County. They are also in violation since they demoted the Chief to the rank of Lieutenant. This is another rank that is not authorized by charter. The Town needs to be real careful in the future when they hire a "law enforcement executive". Without a change to their charter, they could get in a legal jam. Maybe they can get around it with the "but not limited to" phrase.

    Obviously they have ego problems going on over there. What a mess!

  2. The may include, but shall not be limited to, seems to suggest pretty explicitly that the list is not an entire list. You could also say that chiefs and lieutenants are essentially town sergeants or you could say that they are both a sort of special police officer.

    I don’t think that this really clears up their mess, but I think that these appts are okay under at least this part of the charter.

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