Colbert hires new officers

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COLBERT, Okla. -- The Colbert Police Department walked off the job on Friday. As of Monday morning, city officials have already replaced two-thirds of the force.

Beginning Monday afternoon, new officer David Bray will patrol the streets, and city officials say another officer will start later this week.

The only vacancy that remains open is that of the chief of police.

On Friday, Chief Kurtis Smith and two department officers walked out in protest after the city council fired the police department secretary.

The city council will meet to talk about their options at the next council meeting on October 9th. The meeting is open to the public.

From over the weekend...
COLBERT, Okla. -- Three Colbert police officers, including the Bryan County town's police chief, have quit their jobs in apparent protest of the termination of a department secretary.

Town administrator Sharon Smith says the Colbert Police Department was $25,000 over budget, which resulted in secretary Libby Vivone's termination.

Smith says when she informed the officers on Friday that Vivone had lost her job, Chief Kurtis Smith and two other officers walked off the job.

Smith says Colbert has two other officers still employed with the department and a third is set to start Monday.

She says the county sheriff's office will help with law enforcement in the town if necessary.

Smith has been the town's administrator since September 10, after previously serving as its clerk and treasurer.

From Friday..............
COLBERT, Okla. -- The city of Colbert is without a police department Friday night. City leaders say four officers walked off the job around three o’clock Friday afternoon.

Officials say officers are upset because of the dismissal of police department secretary, Libby Lavone, who was fired Thursday.

Friday was her last day at work. The officers said they were not consulted on her firing.

So on Friday, they left.

"We are willing to negotiate as fas as trying to find a resolution because we do not want to lose our jobs nor do we want to leave this town insecure in any manner. But at this point in time the city council has made it quite clear that thier decision stands and there will be no negotiations that's it," said Officer McGillvary, the Colbert Police spokesman declined to give his first name.

"I was in shock when I found out, but after analyzing everything, my stand point is if they felt that way about the town then I believe we are better off without them," said MIchelle Weger, with the City of Colbert.

Officials say the Bryan County Sheriff's Office plans to patrol the streets and Oklahoma Highway Patrol will cover the roads until the city reaches a resolution with the department.

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