CUBA, MO (KTVI) – More than a third of the officers on the street in Cuba, Missouri have been fired, and residents are now protesting, saying the firings are nothing but a vendetta on the part of the town’s police chief.
More than fifty demonstrators gathered outside the small police headquarters in Cuba, Tuesday. The chanted, “Paul Crow has got to go!” as passing cars honked their horns.
Crow, the police chief for about three years, fired four officers early this week. The four all took part in reporting him to authorities earlier this year for what they believed to be misappropriation of public money and making threats against aldermen. A lengthy report was issued by the Missouri Highway Patrol, which concluded there wasn’t enough evidence to prosecute.
“It’s terrible,” Alderman Donald Conaway said, Tuesday. “I don’t understand why. Again I wasn’t at that meeting. Why four people were fired I do not know. I don’t know of any trouble with their work habits. Only think I know is these four people were people who came forward with some of the allegations and I believe that’s the reason they were terminated.”
The four officers are all veterans of the force, including Jason Wilkerson, an Iraq war veteran and father of three who spent nearly ten years as a Cuba police officer.
His mother, Theresa McFadden, organized the protests.
“We’re talking fine police officers,” she said. “No marks. No red strikes. Nothing against them. Military, good fine men that he’s destroying that has families that care.”
FOX 2 attempted to reach Crow for comment. Through his secretary he declined and referred us to the city attorney. That city attorney did not return a message left Tuesday.