UPDATE: Carolina Beach Police Chief Terminated

UPDATE: Carolina Beach Police Chief Terminated Featured

By / Local News / Friday, 08 May 2015 04:00

CAROLINA BEACH, N.C. : May 7th, 2015 – CAROLINA BEACH - Carolina Beach Police Chief Kenneth R. Hinkle was terminated effective immediately on Thursday May 7th.

Hinkle was placed on "Non disciplinary suspension with pay pending an investigation" Wednesday morning April 15th. The Town Council met in closed session for over two hours the previous night during their regular monthly meeting. Following that closed session Mayor Dan Wilcox announced that no action had been taken.

Town Manager Michael Cramer said, "Chief Hinkle was placed on non disciplinary suspension with pay pending an investigation" but said due to personnel privacy laws he was not able to release the details of what led to the decision to suspend Hinkle.

Harry Humphries is serving as Interim Police Chief.

In a letter to Chief Hinkle dated May 7th, Michael Cramer wrote, “Effective immediately, your employment with the Town of Carolina Beach is terminated. This decision is based on your: 1. Poor performance in complying with rules and regulations necessary for the proper administration of the police department. 2. Failure to abide by the Town of Carolina Beach Personnel Policy. 3. Insubordination or a stated refusal to perform assigned duties or a flagrant violation of work rules and regulations.”

The letter stated, “You will be paid through the end of the May 7th, 2015 work day. You will receive your final paycheck in the form of a direct deposit from the Town on May 14th, 2015. This payment of direct deposit will include any accrued unused vacation time. You will receive additional communications from the Human Resources department with regard to employee benefits and retirement programs. Please be advised that, if eligible, you may appeal your termination through Article X. Grievance Procedure and Adverse Action Appeal of the Town of Carolina Beach Personnel Policy dated February 14, 2012 and revised June 24, 2013.”

On Friday May 8th, Heline said he will work over the weekend to develop a response to the letter of termination based on the Town's Personnel Policy and seek to appeal the decision. He said the Town provided details from the investigation conducted by an independent investigator last month. 

Heline said if Hinkle's appeal isn't successful they will, “Have to weigh things out. It will be his decision.”

When asked about the details of the investigation, Henline said he could not go into details pending their appeal to the Town's decision to terminate Hinkle's employment.

Hinkle was hired by the Town in November 2013 to replace outgoing chief Kurt Bartley. A release from the Town at the time of announcing his employement stated, “Chief Hinkle brings 30 plus years of policing experience most recently from the Village of Obetz, Ohio, where he worked as Police Chief for over five years. He has extensive knowledge of the principles and practices of community policing and developing strong relationships with business owners, residents and tourists."

According to the Village of Obetz website Chief Ken Hinkle began as the Chief of Obetz in October, 2007 after serving 27 years in law enforcement with the United States Air Force and the Newark Division of Police in Newark, Ohio. Chief Hinkle holds a Bachelor of Science degree from Ohio University in Criminal Justice. He is a graduate of the Police Executive Leadership College (PELC) and the Certified Law Enforcement Executive program (CLEE).

Hinkle also served as the Ohio Association of Chiefs of Police President (OACP) and was on the Executive Board for 5 years. As the OACP President Chief Hinkle served as a liaison between Ohio Chiefs and other statewide stakeholders in law enforcement. Hinkle was also a member of the School Safety Task Force and Special Needs Task Force.

Hinkle and his wife Gina have three grown children.

 

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