PDT Staff Report
The Portsmouth Police Department on Saturday released information concerning an ongoing criminal investigation into the possible misuse of overtime involving the City of Portsmouth Public Utilities Waterworks Pipe Yard employees.
According to Police Chief Charles H. Horner, on Oct. 18, 2007, the director of the City of Portsmouth Public Waterworks Department contacted the police department and communicated a suspicion several members of the Waterworks Pipe Yard may be falsifying overtime records. As a result of the information provided and with the assistance of the Scioto County Prosecutor's Office, investigators of the Portsmouth Police Department and Scioto County Prosecutor's Office executed a search warrant on the Pipe Yard Facility, 802 Spring Lane. Investigators seized records and equipment.
In mid-December after a preliminary investigation, Horner requested the prosecutor's office make a formal request to the Ohio Bureau of Criminal Identification and Investigation requesting BCI&I assume the investigation.
In mid-January, evidence was turned over to BCI&I and its agency assumed the investigation, which is ongoing. When the investigation is completed, Horner said, information will be provided to the prosecutor's office for consideration.
Mayor James Kalb said this type of conduct, if determined to be true, will not be tolerated and if criminal charges are warranted, the city of Portsmouth will seek prosecution.
The release of information concerning this investigation before its conclusion is a result of media inquiries, Horner said.
It is important for the citizens of Portsmouth to know that once alleged misconduct was discovered, it was reported to the police department and an investigation immediately pursued, he also said.
The investigation is being conducted by the Ohio BCI&I. Horner said the city of Portsmouth has no further comment until the probe is complete.