Satterfield, Attorney Seeking Public Hearing, Larger Venue

Bourbon Police Chief Paul Satterfield and his attorney Mark Wenner are seeking a public hearing with the city council as it ponders whether to follow through on removing him.

The city council voted 4-0 on January 27 to place Satterfield on suspension with the intent to fire him.

A meeting was tentatively scheduled for February 10 for the final vote, but it never came to pass as Satterfield and Wenner had not agreed upon a sufficient date.

The meeting has not been set as of press time.

In a letter addressed to city attorney Robert Davis, Wenner said they demand the meeting be held in public with “a sufficiently large auditorium to allow for our (10) witnesses.”

Wenner said the Bourbon Community Center would be appropriate.

Wenner’s letter says they are expecting pushback by certain aldermen, including Ward 2 Alderwoman Mary Heywood.

Heywood, Wenner said, “has to my face already prejudged the Chief, which behavior demands public scrutiny.”

The Independent News spoke to Wenner on Thursday, who at that time had not received the formal 10-day letter from the city.

“The letter has to outline specific, factual arguments that form the basis for (Satterfield’s) removal,” Wenner said. “In the prior iteration, the mayor had indicated he had not protected or otherwise lived up to dealing with the citizens of the town in a safe and proper fashion.”

Wenner said they would be presenting witnesses — “substantial citizens of the Bourbon business community” — who appreciate Satterfield’s work and wish to express that to the council.

“That would rebut the city’s claim that the chief is not doing his job,” Wenner said.

Wenner said the city will be using the Sunshine Law’s personnel matter to move the hearing into a closed session.

“Their feeling of keeping the matter private notwithstanding, the chief wants a public hearing,” Wenner said, adding that he doesn’t fear what may be said. “Regardless of what comes out, the chief wants a public hearing.”

Sullivan Independent News

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