Newspaper article The Florida Times Union

Brunswick Police Focus of Inquiry; Who Paid for Projects and Was the Installing Officer on Duty?

Newspaper article The Florida Times Union

Brunswick Police Focus of Inquiry; Who Paid for Projects and Was the Installing Officer on Duty?

Article excerpt

Byline: TERRY DICKSON

BRUNSWICK - The city is investigating the installation of lawn irrigation systems at the city police building and at the home of Police Chief Edna Johnson by a sergeant on the force, officials said.

"I am concerned about what appears to be, at the very least, some very bad judgment calls on the part of our chief of police," Mayor Bryan Thompson said Thursday.

City Manager Roosevelt Harris confirmed that he is conducting an internal investigation into who paid for materials used in the irrigation projects and whether Sgt. Keith Jenkins was on the clock as a police officer while he was doing the work.

Thompson said he was told that Jenkins did not charge for putting in the irrigation system at the police department.

"What I'm being informed of is he installed the system and did not charge for that work because he was on the clock as a police officer," Thompson said.

If true, that would be trouble enough, but, Thompson said, "I will have a much greater problem if ... he was brought in and paid for an additional day or days."

The second investigation concerns the use of city-owned or leased equipment to install sprinklers at Johnson's house.

"Sgt. Jenkins in a city truck with rented city equipment on a Saturday morning showed up at Chief Johnson's house and was trenching her yard for a sprinkler system," Thompson said.

Johnson acknowledged Thursday that Jenkins did the work at the police station "during work hours," but said it's been done before.

"Nothing was taken from the city. We were trying to be better stewards of our money," she said.

In the past, officers painted department offices while they were on the clock and that saved the city a lot of money, Johnson said.

As to the work on the police lawn, Johnson said, a system that would have cost $8,000 cost about $2,000. …

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