DARMSTADT, Ind. (WEHT) – Darmstadt residents have been demanding answers from the Town Council after accusations of misspending, theft, and inappropriate conduct came to light.
Emotions ran high as people packed the town garage to speak out, but the meeting was adjourned before getting that chance.
It all started with allegations centered around the town’s Maintenance Superintendent. Residents say they have photographic and video evidence showing him using town owned equipment and the town’s credit card for personal expenses. They now would like to see him terminated.
Thursday’s public meeting was moved to the town garage to make room for the crowd. Several people called for the firing of the town Maintenance Superintendent and the resignation of Town Council President Paul Freeman.
“This has been take way out of proportion,” said Freeman.
Council member Ray Engler, disagreed, saying the Superintendent admitted to drinking while operating town equipment, sleeping on the job, and using equipment for personal use. He said he should be terminated.
Freeman says that termination isn’t the only option and that they should not single him out in order to avoid legal trouble.
“We were following legal guidance. Period,” he said.
The Town Council passed a motion to take corrective action and discipline two town employees with a write-up. But a motion to fire the Superintendent failed – something that many seemed to take issue with, especially when they couldn’t speak their mind.
After other council members left the meeting, Engler did open it up to questions.
“What they did tonight was not honorable and they’re not judging everyone equally,” Engler said.
Freeman says the equipment has been returned by the Superintendent. The Vanderburgh County Sheriff’s Office conducted a brief investigation and suggested that no formal charges be filed.
We reached out to the Vanderburgh County Prosecutor’s Office for reaction but have not heard back.