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Princeton Police Officers Call for Resignation of Merit Board

During the Princeton Police Merit Board's Tuesday meeting, officers with the Princeton Police Department called for the resignation of four members of the board following the reinstatement of Officer Brandt George.

Posted: May 4, 2021 3:48 PM
Updated: May 4, 2021 9:15 PM

Officers with the Princeton Police Department on Tuesday called for the resignation of four members of the Princeton Police Merit Board.

A letter submitted by PPD Captain Mike Hurt and backed by the rest of the department calls for the resignation of George Ballard, Rick Hickrod, Barrett Doyle, and Rick Coleman, for their approval of the reinstatement of PPD Officer Brandt George.

Officer George was originally arrested on a felony Misconduct charge in February after being accused of allowing a suspect to toss heroin out of his car - a crime his fellow officers say should be enough to keep him off the force.

Officer Brandt George - PPD

As a part of George's plea agreement, the felony Misconduct charge he faced was amended to a misdemeanor. While he was originally sentenced to 12 months in jail, he ended up having to complete only 40 hours of community service.

Despite Princeton Chief of Police Derek McGraw's recommendation that George should be fired, he was approved for reinstatement through a 4 to 1 vote made by the merit board.

While officers still haven't backed down, calling for the resignation of those four board members and demanding that Brandt be barred from the force, none of the board members have resigned at this time.

"You're saying you believe a person who committed a crime of dishonesty - and admitted in open court he did it -- you believe Brandt over all over officers," said PPD captain Mike Hurt. "This is ridiculous. We don't understand how you can look at yourselves in the mirror and honestly say you made the right decision."

Brandt's dad, mom, and brother, who serves as an officer on the Evansville Police Department, spoke at the hearing in his defense, saying there is more to the story and he has always dreamed of being an officer.

"Stuff was swept under the cover," said mom Jan Ayers. "There is stuff that everybody doesn't know about and I hope it does come out. This is bull -- if these guys don't step up for my son -- then they aren't going to step up for you guys -- what happened to my son was wrong."

While he's cleared to come back to work, Brandt George hasn't reported for duty yet.

You can read the full letter calling for the board's resignation below:

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