Hartley, IA city council unanimously accepts mayor's decision to fire police chief
HARTLEY, Iowa (KTIV)- Nearly three weeks after Hartley, Iowa's, mayor fired the city's police chief, the city council voted, unanimously, to accept the mayor's decision to terminate Mark Younie.
January 2, 2014 was only the beginning, as Hartley, Iowa Mayor Clayton Pyle called an impromptu staff meeting and fired Younie in front of his two officers. "I removed you from the office of police chief for the following reasons: your refusal to respect my authority and accept my supervision of you and the police department," Mayor Clayton Pyle, Hartley, Iowa said. "Your refusal to inform me of police matters has caused a complete breakdown in communications between us."
Ever since, Younie has been fighting back with the support of community members. He used the Iowa code as his backup, claiming that the Mayor didn't give him due process by asking for the support of council. Instead, Younie says Pyle used a different portion of code that allowed for Younie's immediate termination.
Younie says that though they granted him a hearing, it didn't help him. "Predecided," Mark Younie, former Hartley, Iowa Police Chief said.
"They had made up their mind before the meeting, and it didn't matter what was said by anybody. They knew what decision they were going to make."
Younie says he's not sure whether he'll take legal action. As far as his future, Younie says he plans to stay in Hartley. "We are committed to staying here in Hartley," Younie said. "It may not be law enforcement for me in the future, but if that's the way it is, so be it."
KTIV News 4 tried to get comments from all of Hartley's city council members, Mayor Pyle, and the city attorney after the meeting. All said they couldn't comment.