ST. LOUIS COUNTY, Mo. – More than a dozen police officers are asking a major festival’s organizers about their pay. They also want to know what happened to their sensitive personal information.
FOX 2 has learned about 15 St. Louis County officers who gave up their free time to work for the International Institute’s ‘Festival of Nations.’ A large crowd attended the event at Tower Grove Park on August 27-28. Police officers worked secondary shifts to keep everyone safe.
“It’s been a headache since,” said Sgt. Thomas Naughton, St. Louis County Police Department.
Naughton said the International Institute promised to pay the officers a total of more than $7,300 by September 2. Twenty-seven days later, Naughton said no one will answer his calls or emails.
“This is not typical. I’ve been doing this for 26 years, and it’s the first time I’ve had any problems with any secondary employer,” he said.
Naughton said officers are also concerned that the organization reported losing sensitive personal information.
In an email to the officers, the nonprofit said, “In the chaos of dealing with (a) storm, it looks like hand-delivered W9s were packed up with a box of other supplies.”
Naughton said those boxes contained officers’ names, addresses, and Social Security numbers.
“So, I expressed my concerns to them about locating those documents, and they have never located them. They won’t return any calls or emails,” he said.
Naughton said he received one response – titled ‘AutoReply’ – from his main contact that said, “Hello, I am no longer working at the International Institute.”
“I would just hope I can get some type of resolution for the officers that worked this event. Their personal information is out there,” Naughton said. “I’ve asked (the International Institute) to acknowledge that, and they won’t.”
After FOX 2 failed to get a response from the International Institute, we went to its headquarters on Arsenal Street. A receptionist told us to email the vice president, (who we had already emailed).
Late Wednesday afternoon, the President/CEO said via email, “There has been a staff change here at the International Institute of St. Louis. I am investigating this matter internally and will be happy to come back to you with a comment or status report.”