During a special meeting Friday (Nov. 8), the Sallisaw City Council voted unanimously to approve Police Chief Shaloa Edwards’ decision to retire. Edwards’ retirement becomes effective Nov. 30.
Citing the reason for his retirement, Edwards said, "It's been a rocky road the past year, and I've just decided it's time to go."
Edwards was arrested in April on one count of embezzlement of public money carrying a $3,000 bond, according to court documents. Edwards is accused of taking less than $100 from petty cash funds.
“Case was reviewed and it was determined that the chief had committed an act of embezzlement by virtue of his office,” District Attorney Jeff Smith said. “Apparently he used funds that were petty cash funds that were public funds for personal use. That’s against the law.”
Edwards was stripped of his duties as chief and later reinstated to his job by a Sequoyah County judge in August.
"I don't think anyone is happy about the entire situation as a whole," said Sallisaw Mayor Shannon Vann.
During his 30 years in law enforcement, Edwards served on the Van Buren police force and as an officer overseas. He said working as a school resource officer in Van Buren was "the most rewarding" time of his career.
Edwards said he's grateful for the citizens who have supported and stood by him.
"They've definitely blessed me," said Edwards.
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