Report: Fired officer's job reviewed by chief

October 23, 2009 2:56:08 PM PDT
Several months before a fired Durham police officer was put in charge of coordinating off-duty work, the department's top brass was aware of several problems with its moonlighting program. That's according to an internal report requested by ABC11's I-Team.Click here to read the report (.pdf)

Former Officer Alesha Robinson Taylor was terminated for raking in more than $62,000 in overtime. Her supervisor, Deputy Chief BJ Council signed off on her timesheets, according to a city audit that reviewed the off-duty program from September 2008 to August 2009.

But, another internal investigation was launched more than a year before the audit. The police chief received a letter raising concerns about the management of the off-duty work program and ordered a review. The redacted report conducted from January 2008 to June 2008 does not mention any allegations of overtime abuse or names. However, an inspection of the program found several glaring issues including "a failure to appropriately supervise and oversee the program."

The report also suggests supervisors failed to offer clear direction and that members of the chain of command were given and offered jobs that were never open to all personnel. A recommendation in the report calls for removing high level command from administrations decisions and hiring a civilian to operate the program.

The police chief is out of town and unavailable to comment. The City Manager's Office has released a statement saying that a committee is working to revamp the off-duty program.

The State Attorney General's Office continues to review the overtime abuse allegations. Former Officer Alesha Robinson Taylor has told ABC11 she will fight to keep her job through the city's grievance process. Deputy Chief BJ Council is on personal leave with pay until her retirement in late December.

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