Parker Police Chief under fire after harassment accusations

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Allegations of harassment were leveled against the Parker Police Chief earlier this month by the wife of a Parker police officer.

Lorrie Thompson, an employee at Parker Funeral Home, filed for an injunction against Chief Rodney Mendoza for harassment and was granted the injunction in Lake Havasu City Justice Court by Judge Jill Davis on July 8th.

The town council held an executive session Wednesday evening, July 31st, for a “consultation with the Town’s attorney(s) for legal advice …. with respect to the employment contract regarding the job performance and evaluation of the Chief of Police.”

What happens in an executive session is confidential, but Town Manager Lori Wedemeyer said the council would be receiving legal advice on the situation and how the Town’s position is affected.

Reportedly Mendoza is at work Thursday as normal.

Parker Live has also received reports that the Arizona Department of Public Safety will be conducting an investigation into any wrongdoing.

Thompson claims she has evidence to back up her accusations, saying, “I have verifiable proof of all the events described in my complaint to the Town of Parker that occurred from May 2013 to July 1, 2013. Due to the nature of the harassment, prior to May, I didn’t save anything. It was too upsetting.”

The Town of Parker made no public comment after the executive session with its attorney this week.

9 comments

  1. The reports that the Arizona Department of Public Safety are conducting an investigation are, so far, untrue. I have verified with their Professional Standards Unit that they have not been contacted by anyone from the Town of Parker to conduct an investigation into my allegations. The Town’s attorney is also not responding to inquiries as to the status of my complaint by my attorney.

  2. @ Wayne- But, hopefully the LAST one.

  3. http://www.townofparkerarizona.com/uploads/1/8/0/0/18003687/08-06-2013rma.pdf

    I think it’s time for other people to let the council know something should be done.

  4. This is starting to look like Quartzsite. Chief Mendoza needs to be put on leave until a full investigation is conducted. Lets not make the same mistake. DPS cleared Gilbert from any wrong doing and basically sided with him instead of the Officers. Quartzsite did not follow their own policy by Putting Gilbert on leave while he was being investigated and thus further allowed him to manipulate the situation. Parker Town Council please don’t make us the next National Headline.

  5. Actually Jose, DPS never cleared Gilbert of anything. They put forward a summary that was a very watered down version of the evidence in the not very thorough DPS investigations, and the charges against Gilbert were repeatedly declined for prosecution. The officers passed lie detector tests, but the Quartzsite Council never required Gilbert to take one. The evidence against Gilbert will come out in the numerous federal lawsuits now moving their way through the court. The reality is that the AZPOST compliance specialist had to recuse himself because his nephew is the scumbag lawyer representing the Town against the officers. And his firm was referred to the Town by the Municipal Risk Pool. After the insurance lawyers gave Quartzsite bad advice, and Town officials followed it, then the insurance kicked Quartzsite to the curb.

    The Parker Council has an obligation to the citizens to not take bad advice from the insurer. Advice is not a mandate, it’s a suggestion, and one that only mitigates damages for the insurer. I hope the Parker Council understands that they can now be held personally liable for failure to supervise and other civil damage claims if they don’t handle this situation properly. If they are determined to follow Quartzsite down the rabbit hole then the citizens need to fasten their seatbelts because I see a bumpy ride ahead. Maybe it’s time to try the case in the court of public opinion and let the voters see and hear the evidence.

  6. The attorney that Jennifer is referring to is the very same attorney that was used by the Town of Quartzsite by the way. He seems to be giving the same advice to the Town of Parker sadly. He also is not responding to any of my attorney’s emails.

    I have nothing but, positive things to say about AZPOST, they just aren’t able to do anything to either Chief because it is not within their powers by Statute. THIS NEEDS TO BE CHANGED. Chiefs are not voted in by the people, like Sheriffs are, they serve at the pleasure of the Town Council. Unfortunately, this system does not appear to work in Arizona so, I am going to see about working to change the Statutes in Arizona to give POST the power to order Chiefs of Police to be investigated so that people do not have to go through what Jennifer or I have had to.

    I will release my evidence to the media if it turns out that the alleged DPS investigation is another fabrication by the Town Manager. I think the citizens of the Town need to ask why the Town Manager is doing her best to cover this up for Mendoza. The Mayor is understandable, he is related to the Chief’s wife but, the Town Manager? Hmm.

    Mr. Mendoza is a disgrace to law enforcement and has hurt enough people. It’s time to quit protecting him and let a real, impartial, investigation of my allegations commence.

  7. Just for clarification…the Mayor, Dan Beaver is not related to the Chiefs wife Leeann.

  8. Lorrie, we have been experiencing similar frustration and stress with the Gila County Sheriffs Office. Can you please provide the name and contact information of your attorney? The AZPOST web site reflects a meeting was held on 08/21 in reference to the Parker Police Chief.

  9. Sorry, william, I didn’t see this until today, I am between attorneys at present. The one I had retained was for the Injunction Against Harassment hearing only. I am in discussions with another right now. As far as the AZPOST meeting, that was just to see if they needed to step in. Right now, they aren’t. I sent Director Mann some additional documents a week ago and I believe they are waiting to see what the private investigators come up with to see what action to take. I am sorry about the Gila County SO stress, I feel your pain, if you would like to message me, I can see if I can offer anything. Hang in there!

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