Nevertheless, the final two years of Criner’s time period as chief have been marked by controversy. Final 12 months, 4 police division staff filed federal discrimination complaints in opposition to the city. Three of those self same staff additionally filed complaints with the city about Criner, alleging a hostile work atmosphere and disparaging, profane feedback made about subordinates.
Former City Supervisor James Ervin, who retired in April, positioned Criner on administrative depart for 5 weeks in spring 2020 in response to the complaints filed with the city. Criner was on unpaid depart for 2 of these weeks.
Data supervisor Regina Stanley, information clerk Karry Hodges, former city hearth marshal David Bowles and former officer Justin Smith had been the staff who filed Equal Employment Alternative Fee complaints. The EEOC ruling on Stanley’s criticism remains to be pending, mentioned Roanoke lawyer Terry Grimes.
Hodges, Bowles and Smith all obtained phrase from the EEOC that their complaints might go ahead, Grimes mentioned. Hodges and Bowles declined to pursue their circumstances additional due to monetary issues, the lawyer mentioned.
“Smith intends to pursue his choices,” Grimes mentioned.
The dispute proved divisive inside the division, which at full complement holds simply over 20 staff. Final 12 months noticed a turnover of about half of the officers on the power.