Buckles on paid leave pending due process hearing

Jeff Buckles

The Assistant Chief of Police in Geraldine, Jeff Buckles, has been placed on paid leave pending a due process hearing after making controversial statements on Facebook, according to Geraldine Mayor Chuck Ables.

Ables and the town council reached this decision during the last meeting Monday, Feb. 10. Ables said he had received calls from people all over the United States — including Washington, Texas and California — wanting to know what the consequences would be for Buckles.

“My answer has been, ‘It’s an ongoing investigation,’” Ables said. “Most of [the calls] have just been an opportunity for people to vent… giving me advice on how I need to do my job. I’ve answered every call that I could get to.”

The council will be holding a due process hearing Tuesday, Feb. 25 at 5 p.m. This special called meeting will cover potential disciplinary actions against Buckles, as well as any other business brought before the council.

The assistant chief made the controversial post Tuesday, Feb. 4, after seeing House Speaker Nancy Pelosi rip up the State of the Union speech on TV.

“Pelosi just ripped up his [speech],” Buckles wrote on his Facebook page. “Road Side bomb on her way home and any other Dumbocrats.”

Not long after, he deleted the post and issued an apology.

“I want to apologize for venting on FB,” he wrote. “I have definitely offended some people with my remarks. It just rips my heart out that our great country is so divided.”

Hundreds of people commented on and shared both the original and apology post, with many taking his words as offensive and even “terroristic.” Others supported Buckles for expressing his opinion. Several large media outlets such as AL.com, Salon and the Daily Mail ran a story on their websites about Buckles’ post.

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