Plan giving suspended McCandless police chief pathway to return to duty expected next week
A corrective action plan that McCandless’ suspended police chief must agree to before returning to duty is expected to be completed within a week, according to the town’s lawyer.
Chief David DiSanti was placed on paid administrative leave on Oct. 29 while town officials investigated allegations from a female officer that he treated her unfairly because of her gender and engaged in inappropriate behavior toward her.
Two other woman who have close ties to the police department but are not town employees also accused DisSanti of engaging in inappropriate behavior toward them, according to a member of council.
In addition to DiSanti, Lt. Jeffrey Basl was suspended with pay after the female officer accused him of creating an uncomfortable work environment by openly making homophobic jokes at the expense of other officers, using vulgar expressions and gestures to describe sex acts and engaging in a pattern of improper behavior.
Basl was allowed to return to work after serving a 10-day suspension without pay.
Town council on Jan. 21 voted to change DiSanti’s status from paid administrative leave to suspended without pay until he agrees to the terms of the corrective action plan. The chief’s annual salary is about $119,000. The same night, council appointed Lt. Ryan Hawk to serve as acting police chief at the same salary DiSanti is paid.
“We’re getting close to finalizing it (the corrective action plan),” Robb said on Feb. 7. “It still needs some final blessings from council, but I expect it to be done sometime next week.”
Council does not have to take a formal vote to reinstate the chief, Robb said.
DiSanti’s attorney, Timothy P. O’Brien, said the chief will abide by whatever is required of him to return to work.
After the investigation into allegations of impropriety was launched against the chief, the union representing McCandless police officers took a “no confidence” vote in which all but two of department’s 26 officers questioned DiSanti’s ability to continue leading the force.
Tony LaRussa is a Tribune-Review staff writer. You can contact Tony at 724-772-6368 or email@example.com or via Twitter @TonyLaRussaTrib.
Tony LaRussa is a Tribune-Review staff writer. You can contact Tony at 724-772-6368, firstname.lastname@example.org or via Twitter .