Council faces picking interim chief, calling election
BRUSLY — Police Chief Jamie Whaley said Monday that he will step down as the town’s police chief, effective April 25, in the wake of his recent indictment on charges of theft and malfeasance in office.
Whaley’s resignation leaves it up to the Town Council to appoint a replacement and call a special election to find another full-time police chief.
Whaley, 36, said he was walking away from the town’s Police Department, where he is serving his third term as elected police chief, because of the negative cloud he says his arrest and indictment have brought over the town.
“I’m tired of everyone dragging Brusly’s name through the mud. We got some good people here and they don’t deserve it,” he said. “I think it’s best that I resign after the grand jury proceedings last week.”
A West Baton Rouge Parish grand jury indicted Whaley on Thursday on theft and malfeasance in office, accusing him of using a town-issued credit card to purchase gasoline for his personal truck and boat.
Whaley surrendered to police Jan. 23 after an investigation by the state Inspector General’s Office and the FBI revealed he was using the fleet services credit card to charge $1,120 in gasoline between Jan. 2, 2013, and Jan. 3.
Whaley met with the mayor Jan. 17 and wrote a check for $1,122.75 for the transactions.
The police chief admitted to authorities he had illegally used the credit card after he was shown a spreadsheet, receipts and video evidence, according to his arrest warrant.
Whaley still faces an arraignment hearing in 18th Judicial District Court on May 6.
“It’s just unfortunate the town has to go through this,” Brusly Mayor Joey Normand said Monday.
According to state law, the council has until May 5 to appoint a new police chief and call a special election to fill Whaley’s unexpired term.
Brusly’s elected officials are in the second year of their four-year terms.
Should the council not make the appointment by May 5, the governor will be forced to do it for them.
The next scheduled election is the Nov. 4 primary and Dec. 6 general election. Qualifying would be Aug. 20- 22.