Crestline Police Chief Joseph Butler Resigns From Position

  • 11/19/2018 10:26:49 AM
  • Sartaj Singh
  • Local News

CRESTLINE, OH - The Crestline Police Chief Joseph Butler submitted his resignation Monday morning effective immediately, according to Stone Law Firm. 

Stone Law Firm released the following statement regarding Butler's resignation:

This morning, November 19, 2018, Crestline Village Police Chief, Joseph Butler resigned his position with the village.

After nearly two decades with the Village of Crestline during which his personnel file was without blemish, Chief Butler felt that the village administration had put him in the sad and unfortunate position that he must involuntarily resign effective immediately in an attempt to salvage the dignity and respect of his position and village’s police department.

Prior to hiring The Stone Law Firm, Ltd., Chief Butler found his work environment to be so hostile that he filed a formal complaint with the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission alleging, specifically, Title VII retaliation from former Crestline Village Mayor, Allen Moore.

It was Chief Butler that brought Mayor Moore’s racist and prejudiced comments to the public light after his body camera picked up the former mayor using the “n” word multiple times in a conversation. From that point forward, Chief Butler – for the first time in his career – has become the subject of sudden, inexplicable and retaliatory attempts at disciplinary action ultimately aimed at his termination.

Instead of putting his family and the village of Crestline through further turmoil and controversy, Chief Butler feels strongly that his involuntary resignation is the right thing to do. In stepping away from this position, Chief Butler stated:

“I am hurt that I am in this position today. I wanted to spend my career here with the people of Crestline. They have been good to me, and I have tried to serve them honorably. Sadly, my attempts to do the right thing as it pertains to former Mayor Moore’s inappropriate statements have made me the target of unwarranted scrutiny. The village simply does not need any further controversy. My family and I do not need this controversy. Thank you to the people of Crestline for allowing me to serve you for the past 18 years. It has been the honor of my life to work for you.”

In the resignation notice, Butler stated: "I would like to thank the citizens of the Village of Crestline for allowing me to serve them, without issue, for almost two decades. It has been the honor of my life to represent the Crestline village law enforcement community." 

Butler also stated in his letter that the current state of village administration and its treatment of him during his time as Chief of Police as a reason he felt compelled to resign. 

The Village of Crestline Mayor Joy Miley accepted the resignation as of 11:35 AM Monday, according to a press release. 

Crestline Village Administrator John Rostash stated Interim Chief Jeff Shook will fulfill duties for the position until a permanent replacement is found. 

On November 1st, The Village of Crestline released a list of charges against former Crestline Police Chief Joe Butler.

In the statement of charges obtained by WMFD, the Village of Crestline accuses Butler of "incompetency, inefficiency, dishonesty, neglect of duty, insubordination, failure of good behavior, and other acts of misfeasance, malfeasance, and nonfeasance in the performance of the marshal's (Chief's) official duties in violation."

The statement also includes an appendix with observations from interim police chief Jeffrey Shook, who conducted a review of several of Butler's actions as police chief.

Butler was placed on leave on August 30th, after being escorted from the building by Crawford County Sheriff's Office personnel. Multiple firearms were recovered from Butler's home on September 9th and taken back to the Crestline Police Department.

Crawford County Prosecutor Matthew E. Crall then sent an email to Ohio Assistant Attorney General Stephen Schumaker on September 10th. Crall said he had "serious concerns" about the Crestline Police Department and their handling of evidence, potentially compromising pending cases. On September 17th, Crestline Village Council appointed Jeffrey Shook as the village's Interim Police Chief during Butler's suspension.

On October 3rd, a video that Butler had taken on his bodycam was released, showing Crestline Mayor Allen Moore casually using racial slurs in a private conversation. Moore later stepped down after public pressure for him to resign increased.

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