Former CS Police Chief Sues City, Staff

By: Ashlea Sigman Email
By: Ashlea Sigman Email

Former College Station Police Chief Michael Clancey has filed a federal lawsuit against the City of College Station, City Manager Glenn Brown and Asst. City Manager Kathy Merrill.

The suit was filed May 15, 2009 in Texas Southern District Court. It claims Clancey's civl rights were violated while employed by CSPD.

Glenn Brown did not return calls for comment. College Station spokesperson Wayne Larson released the following statement: "It is unfortunate that Clancey has chosen this approach, but we will be responding to his claims in court."

Clancey was sworn in as police chief February 1, 2005. He announced his immediate retirement from College Station PD October 26, 2007. He told News 3 leadership differences led to his immediate retirement.

A month after Clancey's departure, results of a summer performance evaluation were made public. City Manager Glenn Brown and Assistant City Manager Kathy Merrill were listed as evaluators.

The report identified 18 areas for improvement:

-Needs to communicate a clear vision to the department
-Find ways to utilize talent within the department
-Move the organization to the next level
-Recognize the need to attract and retain talent
-Make fundamental changes to the way we police
-Increase accountability of staff
-Maximize what we have before requesting new staff
-Step up and make critical decisions for the department
-Don't over analyze
-Need to increase credibility
-Needs to increase communication skills
-Must follow through
-Must be prepared
-Needs to have more visibility in the community, on the team, and in your department
-Needs to understand and execute the philosophy of the City Manger's (sic) office
-Needs to understand and follow reporting relationships
-Needs to keep the City Manager's office informed
-Needs to collaborate with appropriate staff on disciplinary actions (Legal, HR, Assistant City Manager)

The report gave Clancey a four-month time frame to improve, and said if confidence in Clancey decreased, he could be fired immediately.

That 2007 evaluation was vastly different from two previous reviews signed only by Brown.

The following comments were made about Clancey in a March 2006 evaluation:

"Mike is a tremendous asset to the City of College Station Police Department and the Management Team. The city of College Station is fortunate that we attracted someone of his caliber. ...Bottom line, Mike does a very good job, runs a good department, and he and his staff provide excellent customer service. I am proud that Mike Clancey is the Police Chief for College Station."

In September of 2005, Clancey was told he was going to take the department to the next level. The following is a quote from the performance review:

"The City of College Station was fortunate to attract Mike as chief. He brings a high level of professionalism to an already professional department."

During an interview on his first day on the CSPD force, Clancey told News 3, "I plan to retire here. This is my last stop on the road."

In a brief e-mail from Clancey received Monday by News 3, he confirmed he is currently the chief of the small town of Saluda, South Carolina, with a population just under 3,000 at last count by the Census Bureau.

After leaving College Station, Clancey took a job in Alexandria,Virginia with the International Association of Chiefs of Police.

According to Missouri newspapers Columbia Daily Tribune and the Columbia Missourian, Clancey was a police chief candidate in Columbia, Missouri, earlier this year, but withdrew his name from consideration January 12. Ken Burton, a former Bryan police chief received the Columbia job. A Columbia Chamber of Commerce website lists the city's population at just over 94,000.

Also in January of 2009, Florida newspaper The Ledger reported Clancey was one of 17 finalists for the job of Bartow, Florida, police chief. According to the paper, by May, Clancey was no longer a finalist. Bartow is southeast of Tampa with a population of around 15,500 according to the Bartow Chamber of Commerce website.

Clancey is listed in an online regional directory as chief of police in Saluda, but the department's answering message says the force has an interim chief.

When Clancey retired from CSPD, Bobby Whitmire became the city's interim chief on November 5, 2007. Whitmire was named as finalist for a permanent spot as CSPD's head. Ultimately, current CSPD Chief Michael Ikner was chosen. Ikner was sworn in May 30, 2008. Whitmire stepped down April 30, 2008.

Whitmire is currently serving as Bryan Interim Police Chief. Bryan Police Chief Ty Morrow has been on administrative leave since November of 2008, following a domestic disturbance in which officers were called to his home.


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