Police chief: ‘Resistance from leaders’ led to resignation

Chief John Alexander, other officers say the resistance made the job ‘impossible’
Chief John Alexander reads a statement of resignation as a police lieutenant stands beside him
Published: Sep. 15, 2022 at 12:08 AM EDT
Email This Link
Share on Pinterest
Share on LinkedIn

PACOLET, S.C. (FOX Carolina) - When Chief John Alexander and other officers left the Pacolet Police Department Wednesday afternoon, a small crowd had gathered to watch the departure. As expected, Alexander said this was their final day on the job.

Alexander fought back tears as he read a prepared statement and explained how he and his officers were committed to improving the perception of the police department.

“We listened to and work with our citizens to provide the type of protection they deserve. Unfortunately with change, we meet resistance - the resistance from leaders who know what’s right, yet are too afraid to let go of the old ways. Lieutenant Gibbs and I decided when the resistance reached a level of interfering with operations of this department...it had become impossible to provide the services that we feel the citizens of Pacolet deserve,” Alexander read.

Chief John Alexander says the resignations follow efforts to change perceptions and resistance from leaders

Alexander and city council members who were present declined to comment on the source of the “resistance” and Mayor Ned Camby left immediately after collecting the keys from the departing officers.

City Councilman Jason Wright said one full-time officer, who is currently on vacation, and another reserve officer were not part of the resignation. However, Wright stated that reserve officers are authorized to serve by the chief of police and without a full-time chief in place, a reserve officer would not be permitted.

The mayor and council issued a written statement hours earlier, acknowledging the “imminent” resignations and stating that an arrangement had been made with the Spartanburg County Sheriff’s Office to provide service in the absence of the resigning officers.

The Pacolet mayor and city council issued a statement prior to the resignations of the police...
The Pacolet mayor and city council issued a statement prior to the resignations of the police chief and other officers(WHNS)

Debbie Smith was present when the officers resigned. She said she is glad Spartanburg County deputies will help keep watch but remained concerned about response times.

“It’s a long way from Spartanburg...to get down to where we are,” Smith said.