Aldermen accuse mayor of secretly hiring new police chief - - Jackson, MS

Aldermen accuse mayor of secretly hiring new police chief

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TERRY, MS (Mississippi News Now) -

Controversy is brewing in the Town of Terry where alderman said they were blindsided, finding out  about the appointment of a new police chief on WLBT.

Board members accused Mayor Roderick Nicholson of secretly hiring Bracey Coleman as chief and excluding them from the swearing in ceremony.

Only one board member, Doris Young, attended the ceremony.

The four remaining alderman said they were not informed by the mayor or any other town official about Coleman's swearing in, that was also attended by Hinds County Sheriff Tyrone Lewis.

The aldermen said they voted four to one to choose Victor Mason as chief.

The mayor vetoed their choice.

The board then overrode the veto and asked to mayor to offer the job to Mason.

But Mason, who worked with the Ridgeland Police Department at the time, was never contacted.

Board members said more than a month passed, and the mayor never called Mason.

Nicholson told those attending the meeting that he was unable to reach Mason.

Residents also questioned the mayor's actions and asked for more transparency.

"The mayor wanted this other candidate Mr. Coleman. The board voted on Mr. Mason. So the mayor some kind of way just held off and held off until he decided, and he'd go ahead on and call Mr. Coleman in and swear him in without notifying the board," said Terry Alderman Joseph Kendrick.

"I just would like to see the mayor follow through on his commitments on what he's doing and the board hold him more accountable as to what his actions are. It's nothing against Bracey Coleman. It's against the mayor doing what's right and the director of the aldermen," Chris Derouen who attended the meeting and said he lives in an area that the town is considering annexing.

Mayor Nicholson requested an executive session to discuss matters.

He said he would respond to the board's questions in 24 hours.

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