(KTVI)-- Kinloch's Assistant Fire Chief is no longer paying the child support he owes and there's a twist. The City of Kinloch reportedly claims he`s no longer an employee, but investigator Chris Hayes caught him jumping off the fire truck in uniform.
Lovanda Small says she`s struggled to get the City to garnish her ex`s paychecks for years. She called us after Kinloch claimed Assistant Fire Chief Darren Small is no longer an employee.
I caught up with him after his squad returned from a grocery run in a fire truck. I followed him into the station asking, "I`m trying to figure out why the City says you`re not .. [Small interrupted] I`ll talk to you off camera."
His ex-wife Lovanda said a Kinloch employee recently told Child Support Enforcement that he doesn`t work there.
She explained, "It`s back and forth. The City of Kinloch always say he`s not an employee there, but then they find out he is an employee. Then once they start deducting maybe 2, 3 checks, then they stop again."
The Assistant Chief doesn`t deny he owes. He agreed to talk on camera.
Chris Hayes asked, "Why would the City say you`re not an employee [Darren Small responded] O.K., at first I was getting paid by the City from 1989, for some reason this year they were saying that this year the City of Kinloch can`t do anything for employees down here at the Kinloch Fire Protection District. So they cut me in January."
[Hayes followed up] So everybody`s working here for free.
[Small] Yes sir.
[Hayes] Even the command staff.
[Small] Yes sir, Chief on down.
[Hayes] This isn`t a way to get around the system?
[Small] No sir.
[Hayes] I`m not going to find out later you`re getting some kind of payment under the table?
[Small] Oh no sir. I`m not getting paid nothing
The Kinloch Fire Web site does say the entire Department is volunteer, but that does not explain why Small got a city paycheck until mid-January.
We tried to get answers from Kinloch City Hall. We were greeted by empty chairs.
Out in the parking lot, we found a Kinloch Fire vehicle. Inside, was a jacket, embroidered "Assistant Chief Darren Small." He even carries a child safety seat in his department issued vehicle. Small walked out of City Hall to explain he does use the vehicle for personal business, but only outside of his volunteer hours.
Small is also a Kinloch Alderman who's running for Mayor. He added, elected officials also haven`t been paid in years. He promised, that if he ever gets a paycheck again, he`ll return to paying the child support he owes.
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