Public Safety Dir. Chris Murphy tries to clear the air on chief - WSFA.com Montgomery Alabama news.

Public Safety Dir. Chris Murphy tries to clear the air on chief controversy

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Montgomery Director of Public Safety Chris Murphy Montgomery Director of Public Safety Chris Murphy
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MONTGOMERY, AL (WSFA) -

The City of Montgomery is trying to clear the air following a joint news conference with Mayor Todd Strange and outgoing MPD Chief Kevin Murphy.

During that hour long event, Chief Murphy made strong allegations about his experience with the Montgomery Public Safety Department and information from all parties was lost in translation.

Public Safety Director Chris Murphy, who is not related to the police chief, spoke to WSFA 12 News in an effort to set the record straight.

Chief Murphy made some disturbing allegations Monday about his time on leave and why he was forced to retire.

Tuesday, WSFA 12 News took those allegations to Director Murphy for clarity on the situation.

Director Murphy spoke candidly about the last few months working with Kevin Murphy. The director pointed to a formal meeting in November 2013 when he realized there was trouble inside MPD.

"I got everything from 'we just feel like we are walking on eggshells all the time' to 'some of the worst leadership I have experienced,' Chris Murphy stated.

These conversations followed what many affiliated with MPD call a mass exodus of high ranking officers, on the helm of retirement that fall.

"When you have high ranking people leaving and they don't have another job, they just want to leave."

From that point forward, the director says he began talking to majors and was made aware of personnel issues involving the police chief.

Director Murphy said the city did not get to this point overnight and proper inquires were made to get to this point. He added that he regrets it took so long to come to a conclusion but said it was a challenge because many were concerned to come forward.

"I have to apologize, and I have apologized to the staff for not taking action even sooner," Chris Murphy said.

The director says Kevin Murphy was aware of the issues that eventually resulted in his forced retirement and was given an opportunity to walk away gracefully.

"The mayor told him 'You don't want the results of that inquiry made public, you don't want that'," Murphy said.

For public record, he contends Kevin Murphy was never locked out of his office, but he was restricted from city hall.

Kevin Murphy is currently on paid administrative leave and will formally retire at the end of September after 28 years with the Montgomery Police Department.

Copyright 2014 WSFA 12 News.  All rights reserved.

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