Outgoing MPD chief opens up about retirement, his future - WSFA.com Montgomery Alabama news.

Outgoing MPD chief opens up about retirement, his future

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(Source: WSFA 12 News) (Source: WSFA 12 News)
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MONTGOMERY, AL (WSFA) -

The revelations keep coming surrounding the controversial retirement of Montgomery's police chief.

WSFA 12 News is learning more about the influences on Mayor Todd Strange in the days leading up to the announcement of Chief Kevin Murphy's retirement.

"Every man, every person, man and woman has a right to defend their honor, and that's what I'm going to do," Murphy said. "This is, in its essence, wrong. When the mayor told me that I could not return as police chief, it totally shocked me. I did not see this coming."

Especially surprising, he says, was learning his two top ranking officers took complaints straight to the mayor.

"I consider Ron and John good friends, I'm deeply hurt by the betrayal that has occurred here," Strange said.

Strange confirmed Friday he met with MPD's Command Staff while Murphy was on leave after his brother's death. That includes eight majors, plus the Chief of Operations Ron Cook and Chief of Staff John Brown. In that meeting, the mayor says all of them expressed problems with Murphy's leadership.

"I really treasured my friendship with them and my working relationship with them, and I am very perplexed, very puzzled and very troubled as to what has occurred," Murphy says. "I know every action I took, everything I said, and everything I did, and I am not afraid of any of the things I've done because I know that I never violated any rules or regulations. I know I never mistreated or abused anybody and I'm confident that my actions were proper," Murphy said.

Murphy has seen similar scenarios play out before at MPD.

"This type of phenomenon occurs in every law enforcement organization," Murphy said. "There were members of the staff when Mayor Folmar was mayor that went to the mayor and complained about Chief Wilson's leadership. The same phenomenon with Chief Baylor, there was a formal investigation and I had to give a statement. Now the difference between the two previous chiefs and myself is my mayor didn't back me up."

Murphy now is focusing on the future and considering a run for Mayor.

"I've had a lot of people ask me to run for mayor, and that's a huge decision to make. It is something I'm thinking about and if I did it, I'd put all my energy, and all my passion into the job that I did as police chief," Murphy said.

Murphy described his relationships with the mayor and director of public safety as very positive, and said they all agreed about 99 percent of the time.

He says their disagreements were the kind of disagreements you would find in any law enforcement agency, any office, any family, the kind of disagreements that could have been worked through.

Strange cited questionable spending and a hostile work environment as reasons for Murphy's retirement, and he says he's confident he made the right decision.

Murphy remains on administrative leave until his official retirement date of Sept. 30.

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