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Officers Jobs Reinstated Following Protest

By: Jon Sonnheim Email
By: Jon Sonnheim Email

Less than 12 hours after the mayor of Cumberland fired one police officer and demoted two more, all three have their original positions back.

Cumberland Mayor Loretta Cornett says her decision to fire policeman Mike Franks and demote Police Chief Derrick Akal and Sergeant Anthony Jenkins was admittedly out of frustration, frustration for what she believes is an increased amount of vandalism and burglary in the town. Her decision sparked protests outside of Cumberland City Hall Friday making it perhaps fitting that those protest signs now sit in a garbage can after she reinstated the officers early Saturday morning. Cornett says she felt those officers should have been patrolling more, but she realizes they're understaffed.

Meanwhile, Chief Akal says his department is doing their best to protect the city.

"It's a lot of frustration on all sides, but that's where we have to communicate better and hopefully work things out easier than the way we did," Akal said.

Several city council members have expressed their displeasure with the mayor's decision and have called a special meeting on Monday to discuss the situation.

Meanwhile, the police chief says he expects all those in his department to continue acting professionally and do the jobs they're supposed to.


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