MACEDONIA — The city’s long-time police chief is facing a three-day unpaid suspension in connection with allegations of "insubordination, misfeasance, and conduct unbecoming a public employee/failure of good behavior" early this year, according to documents the News Leader obtained trough a public records request.
A Jan. 21 letter to Police Chief Jon Golden from city Human Resource Manager Annette Smith alleges that on Jan. 13, Golden asked another city employee, "How is the Mayor [Nick Molnar] treating you?" After the other employee replied, "Great, I have no complaints," Golden allegedly said "Well you are the only one" and then said, "Well I guess we [the mayor and Golden] just can’t get along."
The letter said it was not the first occurence.
"This type of derogatory and detrimental conduct was initially addressed with you in March of 2019 and again in January of 2020 where you were warned against making derogatory and other statements regarding the Mayor/Safety Director’s Office," states the letter.
The letter orders that Golden appear at a Jan. 28 pre-disciplinary conference at City Hall where Golden would be allowed to offer an explanation and present evidence with an attorney or other representative present.
According to a Feb. 6 letter Molnar sent to Golden following a Feb. 3 pre-disciplinary hearing and a report on the hearing by Smith, the allegations made against Golden were "substantiated." Molnar then informed Golden that he would be suspended for three days without pay, to be scheduled by the city.
"You have the right to appeal this decision in writing with the City of Macedonia Civil Service Commission within 10 days of receiving this Determination and Order," states the letter.
City Law Director Mark Guidetti said the matter is still pending because Golden, who has served as police chief since 2002, has filed an appeal and this has been delayed due to the COVID-19 pandemic. He, Molnar and Golden have all declined to comment on the matter.
"He did nothing wrong and will be vindicated," said Golden’s attorney Steve Forbes, who declined further comment.
Reporter Jeff Saunders can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org or @JeffSaunders_RP.