“The resignation of the entire police force has come as a shock to the council. It has never been the goal to dismantle or otherwise endanger the town police department or officers,” says the council responsible for endangering police lives, undermining their ability and who refused to pay an insurance policy for a cancer-stricken officer.
In a surprising show of solidarity, the entire Bunker Hill Indiana police department have turned in their badges.
The resignation came about as a result of what the now-former Marshal Michael Thomison described as “illegal, unethical, and immoral things” done by the town’s officials.
The small department, which consisted of a total of seven officers, has been left completely unmanned while the town attempts to find new replacements.
According to Thomison, “This was our last effort to make a statement.” This was disclosed to a NBC news affiliate in Indiana. The resignation of the force came after two reserve deputies took the initiate to leave.
The allegations made by the department included illegal requests by council members to check the backgrounds of other council members and political rivals. Acts of retaliation were also reported, after members of the council and/or their wives were pulled over by police.
They were also forced to go without necessary equipment, like bullet proof vests. Other members of the department had not been provided benefits, as they were classified as part-time employees.
Besides the equipment problems, Thomison had taken time off after being diagnosed with cancer. What the council did next was shocking. They then cut his marshal’s position of the town down to part-time, so they wouldn’t have to cover his insurance policy.
They told him he was costing the town “too much money.” He attempted to negotiate with the town, and continued to perform his duties, however, the council never responded to him.
The council responded, as one would expect, with utter denial. “The resignation of the entire police force has come as a shock to the council. It has never been the goal to dismantle or otherwise endanger the town police department or officers.
Further, the council absolutely denies that it has ever asked Mr. Thomison or any of the reserve deputies to be involved in any illegal, unethical or immoral actions,” the council’s statement read.
The council admitted that cuts to the department had been made over the previous years, however, they stated that the cuts were not intended to endanger the lives of the officers.
They advised that they attempted to find additional money for the police department, but attempts were met without success.
This problem isn’t unique to small town America. Police departments across the country face falling budgets, as public opinion continues to side against police and the tactics they employ. Thomison stated that he regrets the fact that he had to leave the department, as it was his goal to serve the community that he loved. For the time being, the state and county police will cover the town’s calls for service.