LITTLE ROCK, Ark. — A Little Rock police officer claims he was fired out of retaliation by the police chief and is now fighting to get his badge back.
This joins growing allegations of abuse of office against Chief Keith Humphrey uncovered by Working 4 You.
In a termination letter signed by Humphrey, Officer David Mattox is accused of, “untruthfulness.” The letter claims Mattox gave “contradictory statements to internal affairs.” The letter also accuses him of getting involved in an investigation of a case involving his wife.
Mattox’s lawyer, Robert Newcomb, calls the letter misleading.
“I think it is retaliation when there’s no real substance for it,” Newcomb said. “The timing reeks of retaliation.”
In an appeal filed with the city’s civil service commission, Newcomb argues that Mattox’, “chain of command recommended that there were no findings of misconduct.”
He goes on to write, “the Internal Affairs Investigator did not find that there was untruthfulness.”
The allegations against Mattox relate to a case in August 2020 when a man was accused of exposing himself to women in the Heights and Hillcrest neighborhoods. One of those women was Mattox’s wife.
According to Mattox, he was on his regular patrol when he spotted a car matching the suspect’s description.
Mattox says he called a sergeant who told him to take a picture of the car.
“Mattox took a picture of it, gathered all the information concerning the registered owner,” Newcomb explained.
Newcomb says Mattox uploaded the picture into the department’s crime database and ran the license plate, then at a later time checked the database to see if the suspect was arrested.
“He didn’t contact the individual, never went out looking for him,” Newcomb added.
Mattox says he then passed the information on to the sergeant heading the case.
“Who didn’t do anything with it for 2 more weeks and 5 more women were victimized,” Newcomb said.
Both the city and police department declined to comment. A city spokeswoman emailed the following statement, “if there is an ongoing personnel or legal matter, the City won’t have a comment.”
Working 4 You exposed the lawsuit filed by Mattox and three other Little Rock police officers. They sued the city earlier this month over an investigation into alleged wrongdoing by the Chief.
The officers want the HR report released, but a Pulaski County judge ruled to keep it sealed, deeming the report part of a personnel matter the city is still reviewing.
“One of the people has now been terminated so is it not still available to him?” Newcomb questioned.
Mattox is scheduled for a hearing in front of the Civil Service Commission next month.