Dozens rally for Escondido police chief on leave
Police Chief Jim Maher placed on leave last week
Last Updated: 444 days ago
ESCONDIDO, Calif. -
Escondido residents are demanding answers after Escondido Police Chief Jim Maher was placed on administrative leave last week. On Wednesday afternoon, dozens of his supporters rallied outside Escondido City Hall, questioning the secrecy of it all.
"I am here for one reason: for Chief Maher," said Rocky Argent. "He is a great chief."
Argent, an Escondido police detective, has known Maher for 25 years and feels that his boss is being railroaded.
Others at the rally believe the Escondido city manager has an agenda.
"About seven months ago, the police chief would not take a pay raise," Tisha Bennett told 10News. "He said, 'No, I'll stand by my men and if they don't get a pay raise, I won't get a raise."
Maher was told he was being placed on leave for his own protection and was assured he was not the focus of the investigation. The chief said three weeks before that he advised city leaders about potential misconduct by two of his managers in the police department.
Maher's wife Eva was also at Wednesday's rally. She has her own opinions about what is behind all of this.
She said she feels that politics plays a big part. She told 10News city leaders told her husband to lie about being placed on administrative leave.
"He was asked to say he was on vacation but he told them, 'I'm not doing that. I'm not compromising my integrity by lying to people,'" she said.
After the rally, about three dozen people headed inside city hall for the mayor's town hall meeting.
Maher's supporters asked Escondido Mayor Sam Abed why the chief was placed on leave but Abed said it was a personnel issue and he could not discuss it.
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