Alexandria Fire and Police Civil Service Board voted to grant the city’s dismissal of Lt. Darrell Clark’s appeal

Published: Aug. 6, 2020 at 10:17 PM CDT
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ALEXANDRIA, La. (KALB) - The Alexandria Fire and Police Civil Service Board voted to grant the City of Alexandria’s dismissal of Lieutenant Darrell Clark’s appeal. Lt. Clark was one of two members of the Alexandria Police Department that were placed on paid administrative leave and were being investigated for possible misconduct.

On July 25th, the City of Alexandria told News Channel 5 that Clark was no longer with the Alexandria Police Department. News Channel 5 did file public records request regarding the termination but was told by an attorney representing the city that the request may involve matters of potential or anticipated criminal investigation.

Clark did file his appeal within the 15 days that he was required to, but he filed it to the wrong location. He was supposed to send it to the Alexandria Fire and Police Civil Service Board, but they did not receive the appeal until July 23rd which was 13 days after the last day he could file.

Clark had originally filed his appeal on July 9 to the Louisiana State Civil Service Board and within an hour of filing, Clark was told his appeal needed to go to the city service board. On the last day to file, which was July 15, Clark sent his appeal to the Alexandria Civil Service Board with no word if that was the right location or not. The city did not forward Clark’s appeal to the fire and police board, because the two boards are separate entities.

Brian Cespiva, the General Counsel for the Alexandria Fire and Police Civil Service Board, said they granted the city’s dismissal of the appeal because although it was filed on time, the board didn’t receive it in time and won’t make an exception to this case.

Cespiva said, “If you make an exception, then what are you telling people down the road who may have filed a day late, because they are going to point back to what we did today and say well you gave them an exception. Why don’t you give us? So it goes on and on and gets completely out of control. Rules are rules, unfortunately. They have to be followed.”

Cespiva also said that he expects this matter to be appealed to the District Court and that the 9th Judicial District Court may determine if the board’s actions today were proper.

Also at the meeting, the board decided a new termination hearing date for former Lieutenant Kenny Rachal. The hearing is now scheduled for October 1st. Rachal, who was also the president for the Alexandria Police Officer’s Union was fired on June 9 in what the city called a personnel matter.

Copyright 2020 KALB. All rights reserved.

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