Ridgeland Police Chief Jimmy Houston resigns - MSNewsNow.com - Jackson, MS

Ridgeland Police Chief Jimmy Houston resigns

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Next Tuesday, the City of Ridgeland will have a new Police Chief.

Jimmy Houston chose to resign rather than run into problems with the federal Hatch Act.

This will allow the lawman to remain a Republican candidate in the Madison County Sheriff's race.

He informed the Board of Aldermen Tuesday night about his decision.

Houston said he sought opinions from the Attorney General and City attorneys before entering the race, but never thought anyone would lodge a complaint.

"Did you ever think about getting a federal opinion on it?"

"No, I didn't and I guess that's where I erred by not calling them specifically myself," Houston said. "But it is what it is. The greatest part and the part that makes me feel so good is I was doing something for the citizens of this city. I was doing my job."

Houston used federal grant money to purchase police equipment, even pay officers' salaries.

Someone complained to the U.S. Office of Special Counsel that Chief Houston would be in administrative violation by doing this and running for Sheriff.

The Hatch Act limits political activities of federal employees or employees whose work is funded with federal money.

Ridgeland's Assistant Chief will take over Houston's duties.

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