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Peninsula hires police chief

11/15/2012 - West Side Leader
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By Pam Lifke

Peninsula Village could have a permanent, full-time police chief by Jan. 1 — more than three years after Village Council fired the last full-time chief.

Council, at the Nov. 12 meeting, approved Village Mayor Doug Mayer’s recommendation of Medina County resident Jeffrey Myers for the post.

Myers was vetted by a committee of Mayer and Council representatives.

Myers must complete physical and psychological testing and give notice to his current employer, a Cleveland school system. Upon successful completion of testing, Myers could begin working part-time, he said.

Council agreed to a settlement of more than $120,000 with former Police Chief Kevin James McCue in September 2011, but legal documents ending the two-year legal fracas were not signed until early this year, according to Mayer. Council approved a new rate of pay for the position in February and began its search for a new police chief. Sgt. Daniel Renz has been acting chief since McCue’s departure.

Myers said he retired with full service from a Medina police agency in 2006. He joined the Craig Beach Police Department as a lieutenant in 2007 and retired as chief of police in 2010, he said. Craig Beach is in Mahoning County.

Also at the meeting, two Peninsula residents appeared before Council to complain about police services.

Mandy Cassidy, of Akron-Peninsula Road, alleged she was assaulted in her driveway in August. Cassidy said her neighbor called 9-1-1 and police were dispatched to her house. Cassidy said she was able to escape her attacker and lock herself inside her home. She said police waited until her son arrived home from school and then sent him inside the house to look for her. Cassidy said her son found her lying injured on the bathroom floor nearly an hour after the emergency call was made. She said she was upset the police did not enter the house to search for her themselves and that they sent her son into the house when they did not know what the situation was inside.

Cassidy said that after being released from the hospital, she tried to give Renz a list of people she suspected could be her assailant, only to be told he would not waste resources checking out the list. Cassidy also alleged the police did not collect evidence of the assault from her yard and a police officer wrote inadequate reports.

Bonnie Sulzer, of Main Street, said she called police when she and her husband heard gunshots at 2 a.m. Sept. 19. Sulzer said police never came to her home to take a report, but only drove by. She said when she asked why police only drove by, she was told she should have reported the bonfire she saw at the same time she heard shots.

In other business, Council:

• noted the village received nearly $12,000 from the sale of two obsolete trucks on gov deals.com;

• noted longtime village employee Barb Morehouse will retire. Morehouse has been assistant to the village clerk of courts;

• authorized the lease of two police cruisers at a cost not to exceed $25,000 each; and

• had second reading of amendments to the village zoning ordinance regulating fences. The amendments would limit fence height to 4 feet in the front of properties in the R-1 and R-2 (Residential) districts and add a clause regarding allowable fencing materials. A public hearing on the amendments will take place Dec. 10 at 6:45 p.m. in the Council meeting room.

Council’s next meeting is set for Dec. 10 at 7 p.m. on the second floor of Village Hall, at the corner of state Route 303 and Akron-Peninsula Road.

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