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Police say too much interference

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July 23, 2003

Dawson- The city a review of the Dawson Police Department after complaints from citizens.

The results show officers think Mayor Robert Albritten and city council members meddle too much.

A South Carolina consulting company presented their findings tonight. Officers also said they would like better work incentives and more field training. Results of civilian surveys show there is a lack of trust in the department, bad customer service, and racial bias.

City leaders hope to use the information to improve the department.

"Because the concerns that we got came from the whole community," said city councilwoman Janet Andrews-Mitchell. "Not just one side view, but the entire community. Now that gives us something to work with, a criteria based on what our public and our community wants us to change within our police department."

The Dawson City Council spear-headed the broad investigation after an officer was suspended when citizens complained about how he handled an arrest.

Officer Carl Epperson was fired after he followed a man home, broke down his front door, and maced him.

posted at 11:40 p.m. by brannon.stewart@walb.com