Vine Grove Police Chief fired - WDRB 41 Louisville News

Vine Grove Police Chief fired

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Vine Grove, KY (WDRB) -- The city of Vine Grove has no police chief. We still don't know why Police Chief Steve Manning was fired. It was the mayor's decision.

Vine Grove calls itself a small town with big city pride. There's a farmer's market twice a week there and it's a place residents say is ideal to raise a family. But what you won't find in Vine Grove right now is a police chief.

Mayor Blake Proffitt says, "Steven Manning has been my friend for 35 years. He's a good man. He's just no longer employed with the city."

Vine Grove has about 4500 people and the police chief firing has become big news. It spread fast all over town.

Michael Messina, who owns Michael's Italian Restaurant says, "Honestly, it's a long time coming... something that should have been done a long time ago."

Manning has been the chief for the past four years and was three months away from retiring. He's a former Kentucky State Police trooper as well.

Council member Garry McCoy says Manning himself isn't even sure why he was terminated, but thought it could be related to his police car use.  The mayor says, "we don't comment on any employment-related issues."

Messina says, "The Chief of Police for the city of Vine Grove needs to be in the city of Vine Grove, working for the city of Vine Grove, not in another city sitting, drinking coffee, doing whatever he did."

The mayor says police operations will continue as normal. The highest ranking officer, Capt. Dale Riggs, is now in charge. He's also a former Vine Grove Police Chief.

The department is made up of five full-time workers and three part-time.  Proffitt says he's looking to name an interim chief in the next 48 hours, "And once that interim is set, we'll probably wait until after budget time to start the search."

The mayor says Manning's salary was in the mid 50's.

Business owners and residents say they know the qualities they want in a new police chief.

Mark Bennett, a Vine Grove business owner says, "Just someone that's with the people, there when you need them, someone that does their job in essence."

We could not reach Manning for comment.

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