County commissioner questions police changes

Published 9:54 am Thursday, February 13, 2020

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Changes at the Mocksville Police Department aren’t coming quickly enough and aren’t positive, according to a county commissioner who spoke at the town board’s February meeting.

Benita Finney’s remarks came a month after a magistrate, David Miller, who lives in Mocksville, asked the town to provide details as to how the department is following an assessment, as directed by the town board.

The town  commissioned an article, published by the Enterprise Record, that outlined how the police department was complying with the assessment. It was mostly from Police Chief Pat Reagan.

“I know there was an article in the paper last week about all of the claimed changes that have been made, and I just want to let the board know that regardless of any fancy vocabulary-laden statements that he put in the paper, there are many of us that know there’s still things not being done. They’re not being done correctly,” Finney said.

Her husband, Jeff Finney, resigned from the department during a controversy over Sarge Butters and other perceived problems.

She continued. “The assessment isn’t really being followed. We are looking for true progress and changes to occur. The department may have gone two steps forward, but they’ve gone five steps backward.

“There are still veteran officers whose lives and careers have been and are continued to be jeopardized by individuals who are placing self above service and not serving this community in a true, dedicated way,” Finney said. “We are looking forward to these changes occurring by your guidance.”

The board took no action, but did go into a closed session to discuss personnel matters as requested by member Amy Vaughn-Jones. No public action or discussion was made after that closed session.