Quantico's police chief, officer resign after theft investigation
Updated: January 30, 2013 - 06:28 pm
Residents say two years of mismanagement has led to poor policing in Quantico. Evidence tossed into drawers and official records kept on scrap paper, an audit shows, was nothing short of catastrophic mismanagement.
“I didn’t think they were the best cops anyway,” says Samantha Corrigan, a resident of Quantico.
Virginia State Police are conducting a criminal investigation of the Quantico Police Department after an audit revealed $1,000 in cash was missing, along with marijuana and a handgun belonging to the police chief.
“When you see the police out here it’s like they’re just collecting a paycheck, not really doing their job,” says Michael Jefferson.
The reported echoed that observation, saying the department had an “attitude of complacency.” Record-keeping was shoddy, and worse, police kept track of evidence, such as cash and drugs, personally. Petra Newton says it’s meant years of poor policing.
During the investigation, the only full-time officers on staff took polygraphs. Both have resigned and town officials won’t reveal the results. Now the town of a few hundred people is without a dedicated police force.
“I’m glad it’s coming out in the open because something needs to be done,” says Newton. “When we need help, we need a police force that will help.”
Mayor Kevin Brown declined an on-camera interview, but says the whole thing is unfortunate and he and the Town Council are committed. The town expects them to make it right and they are going to do that.
Chief of Police Howard Castle, also declined an on-camera interview, but says that it was something that happened over the course of a few years and he was “just the one it fell on.”
Prince William County officers are now patrolling the town until a new police chief and officer are instated.
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