New Augusta folks still wondering why police chief wasn't "re-hired" - WDAM-TV 7-News, Weather, Sports-Hattiesburg, MS

New Augusta residents still wondering why police chief wasn't "re-hired"

By Mike McDaniel - bio | email | Twitter

NEW AUGUSTA, MS (WDAM) - It was standing room only, an overflow crowd Tuesday night at New Augusta town hall as peopled showed up to voice their disapproval of the board's decision to get rid of the police chief.

Many folks demanded an answer from the board as to why former chief Curtis Gates was not kept on the force, after every other city employee was recently approved. Mayor Albert Garner says the decision was made by the board in executive session and he's not at liberty to say anything except the board has the right to re-hire anybody it wants.

The aldermen had little to say to the public. Gates said he believes it was a personal attack and the meeting left the public still wondering why.  

"I am very disappointed that the board pretty much refused to give us an answer in reference to why I was not re-hired due to the reason of what they're trying to tell us is that when the new board is elected they have a choice on re-hiring or not re-hiring. But what the people want to know is why they made the suggestion to just not re-hire me and the rest of the employees was all re-hired," said Gates.

Gates spent the last five years as chief of police and he isn't sure what the future holds. The city is now accepting applications to fill the job.

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