McCOOK, Nebraska -- The McCook Civil Service Commission affirmed the decision of City Manager Jeff Hancock to terminate the employment of McCook Police Officer Donald L. Smith, Jr. last month, finding that his termination was made in good faith and "not motivated by political or religious reasons."
Smith began with the McCook Police Department in late 2008 and was terminated July 24, 2012, for habitual use of intoxicating beverages, incompetence pertaining to the performance of his duties, acts unbecoming an officer and absence from duty without leave, according to hearing documents obtained from the city.
The termination stemmed from what his supervisors referred to as a noted decline in performance combined with several alcohol related incidents and came after multiple administrative actions were taken.
Smith was involved in at least four alcohol related incidents while employed as a McCook Police Officer. Separate incidents occurred in April, June, and October, 2010; after which he was suspended without pay for 84 hours and ordered to complete an alcohol evaluation in January 2011. In January 2012, another administrative investigation was performed stemming from allegations of misconduct and dereliction of duty. On June 6, 2012, after calling in sick for duty, Smith registered a PBT of .119.
His employment was subsequently terminated in July and the termination was affirmed in August, 2012, by the McCook Civil Service Commission during a public hearing at Memorial Auditorium.