Editor’s note: the date of the townhall was initially misdated. The townhall will be on July 6.
CROFTON, Neb. (KCAU) — The City of Crofton, Nebraska is currently without a police force after a dispute between the mayor and the town’s two officers.
In a Facebook post, the Crofton Police Department posted a letter stating that Mayor Robert Evans requested Police Chief John Carter turn in his keys and any property that belongs to the city by June 28.
The letter cites that Carter was informed on April 21 that his contract needed to be renewed and that it had not been renewed as of June 27. The nonrenewal also applied to the city’s other officer, Sergeant Miller, according to the letter.
In the post, Carter states that the locks on the city office were changed so that he and Miller can not enter the building. It also states that the city council tabled an item regarding the renewal of the police contracts on their agenda at a previous council meeting. A recording of the city council meeting from the Crofton Journal confirms this.
Carter stated that he was going to reach out to the Nebraska State Patrol to inform them that Crofton was without any police services.
One resident, who claimed to be a member of the town’s rescue squad, asked the city council to reconsider “letting go of our police department,” saying they have had a good relationship with both officers.
Other city residents also spoke in support of the police.
Carter told KCAU 9 that the city council has not approved any coverage of law enforcement in the community. He also claims that Evans is wrong in how the contract with police works. Even so, Carter said that he and the other city officer are unable to complete their duties due to the mayor’s actions.
KCAU 9 reached out to Knox County Sheriff’s Office to ask if they were going to provide law enforcement services for the city and were told they had no comment. Carter told KCAU 9 that they will respond to any emergency 911 calls.
Despite these issues, Carter said that a town hall meeting on public safety and similar issues that was scheduled for July 6 at 6:30 p.m. at the Pulley Museum is still planned. He said he will to bring a lot of issues to the citizen’s attention and answer their questions.
KCAU 9 has reached out to Evans and the Nebraska State Patrol for comment but has not heard back at the time of publishing.
This is a developing story. KCAU will update as we learn more.