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United States News
See other United States News Articles

Title: Sanford Police Chief Bill Lee To Officially Resign
Source: CBS News
URL Source: http://www.cbsnews.com/8301-201_162 ... bill-lee-to-officially-resign/
Published: Apr 23, 2012
Author: CBS News
Post Date: 2012-04-23 14:17:26 by Brian S
Keywords: None
Views: 974
Comments: 5

(CBS/AP) Sanford Police Chief Bill Lee will officially resign today, CBS News has learned.

Lee had temporarily left the department last month in the wake of criticism over handling of the investigation in the shooting death of Trayvon Martin.

Sanford Mayor Jeff Triplett has called a special meeting with city commissioners at 4 p.m., where they will vote on resignation of Chief Lee.

Lee announced on March 22 that he was temporarily stepping down from his position, after the city commissioners affirmed a "no confidence" vote, following weeks of protests over the Martin shooting.

Lee and the city prosecutor had been bitterly criticized for not making an arrest in the February 26 shooting death of the 17-year-old Martin, after a neighborhood watch volunteer confessed to the killing, in self-defense.

Lee had said evidence in the case supported George Zimmerman's self-defense claim.

Shortly after Lee announced his departure, Gov. Rick Scott announced that the local state attorney, Norman Wolfinger, had recused himself from the case. Scott appointed Angela Corey, the state attorney for the Jacksonville area, to take over the investigation.

On April 11 Zimmerman was arrested and charged with second degree murder.

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#1. To: Brian S, *Extended Clip Progressives* (#0) (Edited)

A source within the Sanford Police Department said one of the acting chiefs may also tenure his resignation today as well.

www.wtsp.com/news/article...-Lee-to-officially-resign

They found another honky in the woodpile, so there will be two resignations.


"We (government) need to do a lot less, a lot sooner" ~Ron Paul

Obama's watch stopped on 24 May 2008, but he's been too busy smoking crack to notice.

hondo68  posted on  2012-04-23   15:40:43 ET  Reply   Trace   Private Reply  


#2. To: hondo68 (#1)

...may also tenure (sic) his resignation today as well.

He's a tender tenor?

Fred Mertz  posted on  2012-04-23   15:47:23 ET  Reply   Trace   Private Reply  


#3. To: Fred Mertz, *Liberal Rehab Staff* (#2)

He's a tender tenor?

No, but they have an affirmative action reporter at CBS.


"We (government) need to do a lot less, a lot sooner" ~Ron Paul

Obama's watch stopped on 24 May 2008, but he's been too busy smoking crack to notice.

hondo68  posted on  2012-04-23   15:56:20 ET  Reply   Trace   Private Reply  


#4. To: All, Sanford Board Rejects Chief's Resignation Over Trayvon Probe (#0)

The city commissioners of Sanford, Fla., have voted to not accept the resignation of Police Chief Bill Lee Jr. because of criticism about his department's handling of the Trayvon Martin shooting case. The surprise vote came hours after the city manager and the mayor had announced that Lee, who stepped aside last month after a no-confidence vote, would be leaving permanently.

Two commissioners said it appeared from Lee's separation agreement that he was being forced out, and that he had violated no law or policy.

Lee took a temporary leave in March after the department did not press charges following the shooting of the unarmed black teen in a gated community. A state prosecutor later filed second-degree murder charges against neighborhood watch volunteer George Zimmerman, who has claimed self-defense.

A city statement released earlier said City Manager Norton Bonaparte would ask the City Commission to make the Lee's removal permanent at a special hearing, effective at midnight.

The drama came on the day Zimmerman, 28, was released on bail.

Also today, Judge Kenneth Lester released almost two dozen documents related to the case after national and local news media petitioned the court, Bello reports.

In one of the court documents, Zimmerman's lawyer requested the defendant be allowed to leave Central Florida. In a motion to request bond for his client, attorney Mark O'Mara requested Zimmerman's whereabouts be kept private by the court, the State Attorney's Office and the police.

Zimmerman was whisked away early today to an undisclosed location.

O'Mara said in the documents that Zimmerman is unemployed because of the news media's attention and threats he and his family received. The papers said it is unlikely Zimmerman will look for work when he is released. Zimmerman has no financial assets or savings. The court papers said the bond would be paid for by his family.

A redacted list of exhibits also included documents from two previous altercations Zimmerman had in 2005.

One was for an arrest for obstructing justice and resisting arrest after an argument with a police officer who was arresting a friend of his at a bar. The other was an injunction against Zimmerman by his former fiance after several arguments in which the woman said he pushed her and hit her.

The court records also include a request that Zimmerman be allowed to attend court in civilian clothes, instead of shackled in prison garb, to motions related to his release on bond.

Update at 5:15 p.m. ET: Lee will stay on administrative leave until the outside investigation is completed, which could be three to four months.

Update at 5:06 p.m. ET: In a reversal, the commissioners vote to reject the resolution to accept Chief Bill Lee's resignation.

Update at 4:59 p.m. ET: Commissioner Velma Williams said that she supported the "no confidence" motion in March "because the way the investigation was handled brought national shame to this city," and that her vote wasn't based on violations of state laws orcity policies.

Update at 4:52 p.m. ET: Mayor Jeff Triplett asks whether an outside evaluator could come in over "three or four months" to decide whether Lee could continue to serve or has become too polarizing a figure.

Update at 4:56 p.m. ET: Mayor Jeff Triplett says "the bottom line .. the crux" of "this whole dog-and-pony show" over past two month is "where was ...policy, procedure, state statute violated" by Chief Bill Lee in the investigation of Trayvon Martin's killing.

"If there were missteps," commissioners Mahany and Jones interject.

Update at 4:45 p.m. ET: Mayor Jeff Triplett asks Commissioner Patty Mahany whether she thinks Chief Bill Lee could still lead the department with the public's confidence. She says that the community is not as divided as portrayed in the media and that she has spoken with African-American residents who disagree with Lee's suspension and removal.

Update at 4:40 p.m. ET: Commissioner Randy Jones says, to applause from the audience, that any outside group that comes to Sanford "to get their 15 minutes" of publicity should "be shown the finger and shown the door."

Update at 4:28 p.m. ET: City Manager Norton Bonaparte responds to a question about why he changed his mind about waiting for results of an outside investigation before deciding on Lee's fate. He says it appears that it will be "three-plus more months" for outside agencies to conclude their investigations and that "it's time Sanford moves forward."

Update at 4:27 p.m. ET: Commissioner Patty Mahany asks, "What did he do wrong?"

Update at 4:23 p.m. ET: Commissioner Patty Mahany says she is "deeply saddened that someone has to stand up for Sanford and say, 'we are not a racist city, we don't have a racist police department' ..

She says Lee has "paid for the sins of past police chiefs, past officers."

Says she is "deeply sick, deeply disgusted" about the attacks on the city, Lee and commissioners, and "deeply disappointed" in City Manager Norton Bonaparte.

Update at 4:17 p.m. ET: To applause from the audience, Commissioner Randy Jones says he thinks Lee should be reinstated immediately.

"The only thing Chief Lee is guilty of is a bad press conference," says Commissioner Patty Mahany.

She says that Sanford is not divided racially but that it "was invaded" by outside forces.

Update at 4:12 p.m. ET: Commissioner Patty Mahany recommends that Lee's resignation not be accepted.

Commissioner Randy Jones notes that Lee's resignation does not appear to be voluntary, noting that in his resignation letter he says he is willing to continue to serve as chief.

Update at 4:10 p.m. ET: In concluding, the speaker says Sanford police were following the law in investigating the Trayvon Martin shooting and not "the public opinion of a small minority." He says commissioners should resign and get jobs where they can make their own decisions.

Update at 4:06 p.m. ET: A speaker is challenging the commissioners' March no-confidence vote of the chief, saying, "he did nothing unlawful or illegal."

Update at 3:43 p.m. ET: The city commissioners' special meeting, called by Sanford Mayor Jeff Triplett, begins at 4 p.m. ET, WKMG says.

Original post and updates by John Bacon:

Update at 2:14 p.m. ET: The resignation will be part of a separation agreement with Chief Bill Lee Jr. that commissioners will be asked to approve later today.

"Under the separation agreement, Chief Lee would resign from his post, effective at midnight tonight," the city said in a statement. "The chief's resignation comes a month after he was allowed to temporarily step down from his position as police chief in an effort to aid in restoring calm to the city in the wake of protests surrounding the Trayvon Martin investigation."

Original post: A public notice for the meeting says only that commissioners would consider adoption of a "resolution relating to the police department," The Sanford Herald  reports.

Lee stepped down temporarily on March 22 following a public outcry over the police response to the shooting of the unarmed teen by neighborhood watch volunteer George Zimmerman.

Zimmerman, 28, was arrested last week on charges of second-degree murder in the case. He was released today on $150,000 bond.

Never swear "allegiance" to anything other than the 'right to change your mind'!

Brian S  posted on  2012-04-23   17:42:52 ET  Reply   Trace   Private Reply  


#5. To: Brian S (#4) (Edited)

Update at 4:06 p.m. ET: A speaker is challenging the commissioners' March no-confidence vote of the chief, saying, "he did nothing unlawful or illegal."

The mystery "acting chief" who was also going to resign?


"We (government) need to do a lot less, a lot sooner" ~Ron Paul

Obama's watch stopped on 24 May 2008, but he's been too busy smoking crack to notice.

hondo68  posted on  2012-04-23   19:03:43 ET  Reply   Trace   Private Reply  


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