CELINA — Police Chief David Slusser is accused of mishandling a prescription drug from a criminal case, lying about it and a host of other allegations that could lead to his termination.
Those allegations will be considered Thursday at a predisciplinary hearing scheduled to begin at 9 a.m.
Slusser was placed on paid suspension in February and ordered to turn in his gun, badge, identification and keys to the building. He has been employed with the department since 1978.
He also is accused of mishandling evidence, not returning a gun for 13 years the department was given for a two-week evaluation, falsifying timesheets to obtain more money for his department, and failing to erase the hard drives of two laptops given to City Council that later were found to have pictures of a naked juvenile from a child abuse investigation, according to city records.
Slusser is accused of violating various departmental policies including neglect in the performance of his duties, insubordination, making false statements, dishonest, and conduct unbecoming of a city employee, according to records.
Celina Safety Service Director Tom Hitchcock is conducting the hearing. Slusser can represent himself or show up with representation. He may present evidence and call witnesses.
The mishandling of a prescription drug stemmed from a November domestic violence case. The case involved the drug Xanax, which is used to treat panic and anxiety disorders. Slusser took possession of the drug and it later came up missing, according to city records.
Slusser later wrote the medicine was abandoned property and destroyed without making an attempt to return the drug to its owner. Slusser changed his story several times about the circumstances including saying he took it out of the trash can and tried to get it to the man who was in jail, according to records.
“During this investigation you have consistently offered an evolving version of events that are dishonest,” Hitchcock wrote.
During the investigation Slusser accused Hitchcock of conducting a “covert” investigation and called it improper, according to records.
Slusser also is accused of falsifying time sheets to reflect duties that would qualify for payroll that were authorized by City Council when officers performed specific activities.
“You admitted to falsifying the timesheets and that you did not verify that the officers actually performed the specific duties required by the ordinance. You stated that your intent was to ‘zero out’ those funds identified by the ordinance,” according to records.
The report said Slusser’s actions discredits the city and Police Department in the public’s eyes.
“The standard operating procedures that you are responsible for writing, administering and enforcing, state that an employee that engages in the type of behavior as you have should be terminated from employment,” according to records.
In the matter on the mishandling of evidence, an envelop containing a blood stain, blades and edged weapons was found in Slusser’s desk drawer last month. He placed the envelop into evidence on Aug. 17, 2004, according to records.
“You failed to follow police department policies and procedure regarding the processing and securing of evidence,” the record said.