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GBI reviewing recent Brooklet internal affairs investigation
Retroactive strike against former interim chief
GBI web

Georgia Bureau of Investigation agents are reviewing a previous internal affairs probe of the Brooklet Police Department, conducted by the Effingham County Sheriff’s Office.

The internal affairs investigation is one initiated by former interim Brooklet police chief Brian Mundy. Mundy has resigned from the position and now is a full time employee of the Effingham County Sheriff’s Office, having held that position while also serving as Brooklet’s part-time interim chief.

Before Mundy’s hiring, former Brooklet police chief Doug Meyer conducted his own internal affairs investigations into Brooklet police matters.

“On Tuesday, July 10, 2018, District Attorney Richard Mallard requested that the GBI conduct a preliminary review of an internal investigation involving the City of Brooklet,” said Statesboro’s Region Five GBI Special Agent-in-Charge John Durden.

The IA investigation is looking into whether any wrongdoing or inappropriate action was conducted regarding the content of the internal affairs query by Effingham County Sheriff’s officers.

On July 5, the Brooklet City Council voted to retroactively reprimand Mundy and change his resignation status from “resigned” to “resigned – ineligible for rehire.” The change in status was reported to the Peace Officers Standards and Training, and was done on the basis that Mundy was employed full time by the Effingham County Sheriff’s Office while he also worked for Brooklet.

The Statesboro Herald was unable to attend the meeting, but viewed it via video that originated from an AllOnGeorgia videographer.

Some council members felt, after the fact, that Mundy’s selection of Effingham sheriff’s deputies to investigate was inappropriate.

During his employment with Brooklet, Mundy initiated two internal affairs investigations, conducted by two separate Effingham deputies.

“In the (current GBI) review, the GBI will determine if any possible criminal actions were documented in the internal investigation,” Durden said. “The GBI has begun the inquiry and once the inquiry is complete, it will be turned over to the District Attorney for next steps.”

 

‘Talking to the press’

Another complaint voiced by councilmen during the July 5 meeting was that Mundy “talked to the media” and filled open records requests without consulting council.

State law mandates an entity respond within three days upon receipt of an open records request. The Statesboro Herald has never sought a request from Mundy, instead sending such requests to the Brooklet City Clerk Angela Wirth.

However, AllOnGeorgia, a news blog, recently reported having submitted such a request to Brooklet Police Clerk Mary Renteria, supervised by Mundy. Renteria filled it as required by law.

Council members disliked the request was filled, holding Mundy responsible. However, since the council voted that night to limit any future records requests to be filled by Wirth, there was apparently no prior city policy dictating who would fill such requests.

AllOnGeorgia reported Renteria filled their request under Mundy’s supervision, as she always did under Meyer’s previous supervision.

Mundy has not spoken to the Statesboro Herald about Brooklet police matters, with the exception of stating he could not comment at the time without his attorney’s consent.

During the July 5 meeting, Councilman Greg Schlierf suggested contacting the GBI to investigate whether the Effingham County Sheriff’s Office involvement with the internal affairs investigation was appropriate. There was no motion made to do so, however.

Since February, when a Brooklet resident posted Facebook videos of encounters with former Brooklet police Sergeant John Baker and former chief Doug Meyer, showing angry exchanges, the city has been plagued with issues regarding the police department.

Those videos eventually resulted in Meyer’s choice to retire and resign in lieu of termination, and Baker’s termination.

Aside from alleged misconduct by several officers, many of whom have since been fired or suspended, issues of concern include missing police records, a now-closed sexual assault investigation, and theft charges linked to that investigation, which was closed due to lack of evidence.

 

Herald reporter Holli Deal Saxon may be reached at (912) 489-9414.