Leet Township names new interim police chief after termination of former chief

LEET TOWNSHIP, Pa. — There’s a new top cop in Leet Township, but a huge portion of their recent meeting was about the fired former police chief.

Sparks flew as soon as commissioners wanted to add the hiring of a new interim police chief to the agenda.

Residents’ main problem was how former Police Chief Mike Molinaro was terminated. Molinaro is suing the board of commissioners.

The former chief was fired after he fired an officer. In court documents, the board claims he didn’t have the power to do that. It also accuses the former chief of domestic abuse, abuse of authority, stealing money during a search warrant and deleting bodycam video to cover it up.

The board says it’ll be up to the District Attorney and the U.S. Attorney’s Office if they file criminal charges against the former chief. Commissioners also claim that an independent third party found allegations against the former chief.

Commissioners voted to accept the resignation of Interim Chief Stephen Panormios. They also voted unanimously to hire Brian Jameson as the new interim Police Chief, with his pay starting at $30 an hour. Jameson is a retired lieutenant from the Ambridge Police Department.

The board says they can’t hire a full-time chief because of litigation with the former chief.

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