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Officers disciplined over incidents

Two recent internal probes by city officials in Thomson have concluded with three police officers being disciplined over separate incidents - one of which involved a physical altercation.

The names of the officers have not been made public and attempts by the newspaper to obtain those names from various officials, including City Administrator Don Powers, have been unsuccessful. Even Thomson Police Chief John Hathaway refused to release their names.

Both internal investigations concluded during the week of March 16, according to a statement released to the local media by Mr. Powers last Wednesday.

The city administrator said the first internal investigation regarded an officer renting "several" movies, "one with inappropriate subject matter," from an Augusta cable service, Comcast, on a television set at the police department's sub-station behind city hall.

The employee received disciplinary action in accordance with city work rule policies, Mr. Powers said. He was not specific in revealing what disciplinary action was handed down.

The cable service since has been stopped and the television removed from the sub-station, he added.

A second incident, according to Mr. Powers, involved two officers getting into a recent altercation.

"What began as a verbal banter or teasing back and forth between two police officers, escalated to a physical altercation between these same two men," Mr. Powers said. "They were quickly separated by other officers and the altercation ended."

The city administrator said statements given from the officers about the altercation generally indicated that was the extent of what happened.

"Both of the officers received disciplinary action in accordance to our work rule policies," Mr. Powers said. "In both cases, appropriate disciplinary action was taken. City officials and employees in no way condone or promote this type of behavior and regret that it happened."

Web posted on Thursday, March 26, 2009

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