Ga. Chief Fires Lieutenant for Alleged Insubordination

The embattled Chattahoochee Hills police chief fired his second in command, after an investigation into charges the officer was insubordinate.


CHATTAHOOCHEE HILLS --

The embattled Chattahoochee Hills police chief fired his second in command, after an investigation into charges the officer was insubordinate.

A letter of termination was written to Lt. Jamie Melton on Friday.

Melton is the officer who turned over anonymous letters sent to city hall to sheriff's investigators. The letters accused the police chief of having sex parties and getting an underage firefighter, Hope Owens, drunk at his home.

Asked if he fired Melton because the officer turned over the letters, Chief Damon Jones told CBS Atlanta, "He’s being fired for insubordination and his insubordinate acts inside this department."

Jones said that Melton was bad mouthing an officer who the chief planned to hire, and Melton's comments were destroying morale in the department.

Melton believes he was fired because he asked for an investigation into the chief's behavior. The lieutenant said that the chief confirmed the information in the anonymous letters during a recent conversation with him.

"He made me aware on July 29 that the fireman had been at his house drinking," said Melton. "It's what he told me. How would I know? He also made me aware that she was in Florida with him drinking."

CBS Atlanta asked the chief about the allegations. "She has been to my home before. She and my wife are friends," said Jones, who denied the 19-year-old firefighter was drinking at his home.

It's still unclear who wrote the letters.

"I have no idea," said Melton. "But I wish they'd come forward because they made my life miserable."

Melton referred all questions to his attorney but vowed to appeal his firing.

Copyright 2010 by cbsatlanta.com. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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