Tontitown Mayor Discusses Recent Termination Of Police Chief

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TONTITOWN (KFSM) - The Tontitown City Council held a special meeting Tuesday (Jan. 13) night concerning its fire and police departments.

Dozens were there to hear from new mayor Paul Colvin.

“It shows that the citizens are truly concerned about the town that they live in,” Colvin said.

One of the items on the agenda was the future of the Tontitown Fire Department, and how it's going to be funded.

“Hopefully they will keep the [city’s] fire department,” said former city council member Clint Penzo.

Penzo said one of the reasons he came to the meeting was to voice his opposition to the recent firing of police chief Kristopher Arthur, by Colvin.

“Hopefully they will reinstate the police chief,” Penzo said. “I don`t think there was justification for it. He shouldn`t have been fired. I think it is setting up the city for a major lawsuit, to fire a chief without reason.”

5NEWS asked Colvin why he fired the police chief on Friday (Jan. 9).

“I have no comment on it. Thank you, though,” Colvin said.

The mayor said Arthur has the right to ask for an appeal, and he hopes the council hears it.

“I hope that they do [hear the appeal,] to give every person their right to have their day,” Colvin said.

Penzo said he thinks the freshman aldermen, and mayor, need to recognize the power their decisions have.

“I think they need to slow down, and take their time,” Penzo said.

During the meeting, Penzo also told the city council that interim police chief Denny Upton is in that position illegally, citing a city ordinance which requires a police chief to have at least a bachelor's degree.

Penzo says Upton does not meet that requirement.

Upton had been Tontitown's police chief before. He was asked to resign in July 2013.

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