Pine Bluff Mayor Explains Police Chief Firing
"I just made an informed decision," said Pine Bluff Mayor Debe Hollingsworth about her firing of Police Chief Brenda Davis-Jones.
During Davis-Jones's time as chief, several officers who spent decades protecting and serving left the force.
"We have lost a lot of veterans," said Hollingsworth.
In total, nearly a 150 years of experience was lost. That's experience Hollingsworth says is vital to the safety of Pine Bluff, and she's already getting some of it back.
"Matter of fact, we've had two (officers) contact us that have moved away wanting to come back, so I think that is wonderful within itself. I think it speaks volumes for where our city is going to go," said Hollingsworth.
For now, Lt. Jeff Hubanks has come out of retirement to lead the force in the interim, and Hollingsworth says in just two days, she's seen a difference in the department.
"The morale is unbelievable...daylight and dark," said Hollingsworth of the difference.
The mayor says her next step is to re-establish the civil service commission, an outside body which handles disciplinary matters for the fire and police departments.