MAYFLOWER (KATV) -Dozens of traffic tickets will be refunded after former Mayflower Chief of Police, Billy Paul Baker, plead guilty Wednesday morning to lying about his officers being properly certified. It's been months since Chief Baker resigned, but since then the town has been busy trying to make things right.
"It's a little bit unusual but not unheard of," said new Chief of Police, Robert Satkowski.
It's a rare move that you probably won't hear about again, at least not to this extent.
"The refunds occur no matter what the speed was," said Satkowski.
The city of Mayflower refunding each and every driver given a speeding ticket as a result of a radar gun between the months of December 2011 and 2012.
"It's an unfortunate circumstance," said Satkowski.
What's unfortunate is that it's all because of none other than the former Police Chief Billy Baker who plead guilty to tampering. Making all tickets issued by his officers invalid. City officials knew right away what they had to do.
"(we reached) a general agreement fairly quickly," said Terry Ballard, Mayflower City Attorney. "We need to find out who paid this money that shouldn't have and get it back to them," he said.
But rectifying things meant going beyond just a refund.
"The conviction was basically taken off of their records, reported to driver control,"said Ballard. "So it came off their driving record and, of course, we washed out the fines," he said.
Satkowski, the new Police Chief, says he has a unique challenge coming into this new job. He has to clean up the Mayflower Police Department's tarnished image.
"The citizens take a dim view of being stopped." said Satkowski.
But moving forward, he says, the most important thing is ensuring even police follow the law.
"To make sure that whenever a training is held that it's actually held," said Satkowski.
Even people who plead guilty to breaking the speed limit qualify for a refund. If you fall within this time frame you can call Sheila Caudle, Mayflower Court Clerk, at 501-470-0948 or Email her at firstname.lastname@example.org