Questions Raised About New Jenks Police Chief's Past

Wednesday, August 31st 2011, 10:11 pm
By: News On 6

Ashli Sims, News On 6

JENKS, Oklahoma -- Jenks' new Police Chief has been on the job for a week, and now people are asking questions about one of his previous jobs.

The last time Cameron Arthur led a police department, he was fired. He admits that and says that's not the whole story.

Arthur is the department's first new chief in decades.  He says it was the city's charm that attracted him to the job.

"Everybody is just extremely nice and everybody seems to be pro-active and pro-law enforcement, and it just seems like it will be a wonderful place," Chief Arthur said.

Chief Cameron Arthur has worked in Kansas City, Breckenridge, Colorado, and at the Drug Enforcement Agency. But it's one job, another chief's job, that's got some asking questions.

"We knew these questions would come out. I spoke to the city management before I came here," Arthur said.

Arthur is talking about Galena, Kansas which he says was a small town with big city problems, like rampant drugs and allegations of corruption.

Newspaper reports say Arthur had several complaints against him there, including an accusation of excessive force which was ruled justified by Kansas state investigators. There were also allegations that he searched homes without proper warrants.

"Whenever you're dealing with these difficult issues you're going to have complaints," he said. "I called in KBI and all of the other agencies any time we had any allegations and they always said absolutely nothing there. My officers did nothing wrong. I did nothing wrong."

The controversy came to a head in the fall of 2003, when Galena city officials fired Arthur. He then sued the city for wrongful termination in 2004.

And Galena's mayor, who was on the city council back then, says the city settled that suit with a six-figure payout.

"As people give me the time to prove myself in Jenks, it's not the same as Galena, Kansas. It's not even close. And we'll work together and have a great relationship," he said.

The Jenks City Manager says he doesn't hire police chiefs "willy nilly" and that Chief Cameron Arthur was thoroughly vetted. He says he never saw any official complaints and that Arthur's criminal record is clean.