Spavinaw Police Chief Out Of Jail; Town In Shock
SPAVINAW, Oklahoma - The future of a small town's police force is uncertain after its chief was arrested for molesting two young girls.
Spavinaw's police chief, Clarence Gregory is now out of jail. The city had scheduled a meeting Friday night to decide what its next move would be, but it was canceled at the last minute.
Gregory is Spavinaw's only paid officer; the other two volunteer their time patrolling.
The meeting was called off after the city's attorney told the town to wait a few days before making any decisions regarding law enforcement in Spavinaw.
At this time, Gregory is still on the town's payroll and back at his home just outside of Spavinaw.
When we knocked on his door, Gregory said he couldn’t talk with us, but according to a probable cause affidavit, the police chief voluntarily spoke with investigators, admitting he touched two young girls multiple times inside his home.
Court records show one of the girls told investigators Gregory first started touching her seven years ago when she was in third grade.
A younger girl told detectives the inappropriate touching began three years ago for her, when she was in fifth grade. She said the touching happened about every two weeks from the time it began to just recently when she stopped visiting Gregory as often.
“If he did, he ought to pay for it, I mean, you don't do that to a kid,” said Wendell Odel.
Odel said he still can't believe the man he's known for years as an officer of the law is now on the other side of enforcement.
“He was a good officer, he was. He was a good officer,” Odel said. “It shocked everybody, it really has shocked everybody.”
What those in the town seem most surprised by are court records saying Gregory confessed to the crimes.
The affidavit says Gregory told investigators he rubbed the girls' private parts because, "He was trying to instruct them on what not to let boys do to them."
Gregory's timeline is different than the girls'. He told investigators he started touching the girls two years ago, but hasn't touched either of them in three weeks.
OSBI said Gregory didn't randomly pick two girls, agents said he knows them.
Gregory bonded out of jail Friday afternoon on the condition he has absolutely no contact with the girls or their families.
We're told the town will hold its special meeting next week where Gregory will likely be placed on paid suspension, until the judicial process is over.
City leaders should also decide if another officer will step in as interim chief. Another possibility is the town will contract out services with the Mayes County Sheriff's Office.