Jackson chief of police gets allegation of harassment

Wednesday, October 16, 2002

SUSPENDED

By Mike Wells ~ Southeast Missourian

An allegation of sexual harassment made by a dispatcher against Jackson police chief Marvin Sides resulted Tuesday in his suspension with pay while an investigation is being conducted, city officials said.

"We all felt, and the chief did too, that it was in everyone's best interest for him to take a suspension with pay because it would be awkward for him to remain in authority while an investigation is being conducted," Mayor Paul Sander said. "As far as the city administration goes, we're not trying to point guilt at anyone. We're trying to have a fair process, for the person who made the allegation and for the chief as well."

The investigation will be coordinated by the county prosecutor's office and conducted by the Missouri State Highway Patrol.

"I don't expect it to take long, no more than a few days," Sander said.

Sides is a 20-year veteran of the department and has served as its chief since 1994. He worked as a dispatcher before becoming a full-time patrolman. In 1991, he was promoted to shift supervisor and sergeant. He is a 1965 graduate of Jackson High School.

Side's second-in-charge, Capt. Robert Hull, has assumed temporary command of the department, Sander said.

Attempts to reach Sides for comment late Tuesday were unsuccessful.

mwells@semissourian.com

335-6611, extension 160

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