Union City Police Chief Charles Everett retired last week just before the city of Union City released the results of an investigation into his off-duty work.
Everett came under scrutiny in September after cable News 12 said that he earned money for off-duty security details at the town’s athletic field and pools. News 12 claimed they had videos of Everett arriving late, leaving early, and even exercising at the gym while the Board of Education paid the Police Department for his extra work.
In addition to his annual salary of $200,000, Everett earned $45,000 a year for two years providing security for the city’s pools and for Jose Marti athletic field.
“[Everett allegedly] violated the very policy he enacted.” –Report issued by Walter Timpone
The state attorney general’s office also issued a subpoena to the town asking for more information.
The results of Timpone’s investigation were released late Wednesday night. Timpone called it an “interim report” because, as it states, “documents necessary for a [full] review are being produced slowly.”
Hours before the report was released, Stack announced that Everett is retiring. According to Stack, Everett chose to retire because “it was in the best interest of his family, himself and the city of Union City.”
The mayor stated he has known Everett (whom he called “Charlie”) since he was a young patrolman and that he was always available whenever he was needed.
“He’s done a great job in all his many capacities, and I wish he and his family all the best,” Stack said.
The report outlined four main findings. The first one was that the opportunity to work the off-duty security detail in the field was closed to rank and file, or the officers in non-leadership positions in the department.
Normally, there is a tiered request system: police officers below the rank of sergeant call in at 8 a.m. to request off-duty details, and any officer above that rank may call in and request whichever duties are left at 9 a.m.
Timpone’s report states, “The salutary and long-standing purpose of this policy was to give lower ranking and lower paid police officers first crack at the details to supplement their income.”
But Everett “dismantled” this system, the report claims.
Second, part of the Off-Duty Detail Policy states that officers must complete mandatory PD-2B forms, have them time-stamped, and sign in and out with the detail employer in order to keep track of their time served. Everett allegedly did not complete PD-2B forms and in failing to do so, the report states, he allegedly “violated the very policy he enacted.”
Third, the report says that Off-Duty Detail Coordinator Sergeant Abel Hernandez also allegedly failed to enforce the Off-Duty Detail Policy and that “most, if not all” officers who worked details at Jose Marti Field neglected to fill out the forms.
Hernandez, reached at police headquarters on Thursday, declined to comment.
Everett did not return a phone call for comment.
Finally, the report finds Everett and Hernandez are in a conflict of interest because “they are participating in details over which they have a duty to supervise and/or ensure are openly, transparently and fairly administered.”
Timpone recommends in the report that the 2005 Off-Duty Detail Policy be reinstated, all off-duty details are electronically tracked, that details closed to rank and file be eliminated and that the Director of Public Safety hold quarterly audits to ensure that PD-2Bs are completed and filed properly.
The report also recommends that disciplinary charges be brought against Everett and Hernandez for alleged Neglect of Duty, Performance of Duty, Obedience to Laws and Regulations and Failure To Comply With Lawful Orders.
Gennarose Pope may be reached at email@example.com/a>