Divided Colbert City Council votes to keep interim police chief

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COLBERT, Okla. (KXII) -- After a divided vote Monday on a possible termination during the Colbert City Council meeting, the police department still has its chief.

If the council had terminated Interim Police Chief David Petersen, they would have had to find a new chief for the fifth time this year. But two members voted yes and two voted no, meaning Petersen is still chief.

The council declined to comment and city employees said they were not allowed to interview with us.

While we don't know why it was put on the agenda to possibly terminate Petersen, we do know that a month ago Petersen appeared to be in a photo, in uniform and in his patrol car, flashing an obscene gesture with two teen girls.

We also know that he has an arrest record and was fired from the Pushmataha County Sheriff's Office last year and let go from Hugo Police 11 years ago.

Also discussed at Monday's meeting: Colbert's EMS. The department was forced to shutdown Sunday because the medical director resigned.

The EMS director also resigned, so at Monday's meeting the council approved Shelley Marks to become the new EMS director. Marks will now find a new medical director.

For now, Bryan County EMS will be responding to emergencies in Colbert.

"They told us they were closing their doors last night. So we brought on an extra crew and we want to make sure that if there is a medical emergency, that we get someone down there to help them," Nate Toews with Bryan County EMS said.

The council nor the new director would comment on how long Colbert EMS will be out of service.

Petersen said he was not allowed to comment on his possible termination either.

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