Board upholds Dothan officer's firing

Board upholds Dothan officer's firing

“I’m going to continue to fight for myself and the citizens of Dothan," promised former Captain Keith Gray
Personnel Board Members Earl Tyson and Tim Shirley at board meeting on Jan. 13, 2014 (Blake Deshazo)
Personnel Board Members Earl Tyson and Tim Shirley at board meeting on Jan. 13, 2014 (Blake Deshazo)
NAACP President A.Y. Cotton speaks with reporters on Jan. 13, 2014 (Blake Deshazo)
NAACP President A.Y. Cotton speaks with reporters on Jan. 13, 2014 (Blake Deshazo)
The termination of a Dothan police officer who spent nearly three decades on the force has been upheld. The Personnel Board voted unanimously Monday that the firing of former Captain Keith Gray was warranted.

“I think they made a really good, just, and right decision,” Police Chief Greg Benton said after the vote. “If he hadn’t done anything wrong he would still have a job today.” Benton made the decision to terminate Gray.

At issue were several things including Gray’s association with what many consider an outlaw motorcycle gang.

At the time of his termination in September, 2012 Benton said only that Gray committed offenses in violation of department policy. He called some of those violations intolerable.

A hearing before the personnel board held in November centered mostly on the 28-year veteran’s association with the motorcycle club. However, sources within the department say Gray committed several serious violations.

“I’m not guilty and I haven’t been guilty,” Gray said during an impromptu press conference with reporters. “I’m going to continue to fight for myself and the citizens of Dothan.” Gray promises to appeal his termination to Houston County Circuit Court.

The president of the local NAACP chapter said his organization will work to help get Gray back to work. “They’re not going to throw him out like a bunch of garbage,” said A.Y. Cotton. “That will not happen if I have to bring half of Washington down here.”

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