Former Guilford County Sheriff’s Department Chief Deputy Edward Melvin, who was recently willing to speak on many matters related to his two months with the department when contacted by the Rhino Times, didn’t wish to comment publicly on his resignation or the reasons behind it – however, the timing of the decision and other sources in the department shed some light on that decision.
Several sources familiar with the series of events leading up to the resignation say that Melvin had frequent disagreements with actions Rogers took or allowed, but one in particular resulted in a very contentious Monday discussion between the two men and ultimately led to Melvin’s resignation.
A high-ranking jail officer with 19 years with the department was fired in February out of the blue. Several sources said that move shocked many in the department. They said the woman was a highly dedicated, model employee who had worked her way up through the Sheriff’s Department over nearly two decades and had taken outside classes to advance her career and she was dismissed without being given a reason.
The fired officer declined to speak with the Rhino Times about what she was told regarding her termination and other sources said that the reason behind the firing was a complete mystery to them.
One former Sheriff’s Department officer said the evidence of her competence, qualifications and work ethic is that she was immediately hired for another job in law enforcement with an adjoining county.
That firing, which greatly angered many in the department, took place on Monday, Feb. 11. Melvin resigned on Tuesday, Feb. 12.
Immediately after the firing – even before Melvin’s resignation – several county employees contacted the Rhino Times to express their dismay. One said it made all Sheriff’s Department employees question their job security no matter how well they were doing their jobs.
Another deputy said there were other firing, hiring and promotion practices that were hurting morale in the department. That officer said the “arbitrary” firing of a well-functioning top jail officer made no sense when Rogers and his top administrators were attempting to fill big vacancies in the jail. He said that, after two decades of exemplary service, the woman deserved at the very least to be given a reason why she was being terminated.
One former high-ranking Sheriff’s Department officer said that the firing was the “straw that broke the camels back” for Melvin, who had also had other issues with Roger’s personnel practices. He said that Melvin had a great deal of respect for the employees in the department and he simply wasn’t willing to remain working for Rogers after a firing of that nature.
When asked about a large number of matters related to Melvin’s comments in discussions with the Rhino Times, the Guilford County Sheriff’s Department had a great deal to say on every other question – however, there was no response or even mention of the question as to why the high-ranking jail officer was fired. A follow-up email asking whether that omission of any answer was an intentional or unintentional one – and whether the department wished to shed any light on the matter – also did not elicit any comment from the department.
This happens in more cases than everyone realizes. For instance a fire chief hired his cousin which was let go from another fire department. He was let go for illegal drug use and stealing from other firefighters. Within his first two years he was promoted. It gets better. During the time he has been there he has been in several altercations with other firefighters. The fire chief hires him knowing his past then refuses to even discipline him for his actions. How do these fire chiefs get by with stuff like this? Who holds them accountable for their actions after all it’s our tax dollars that supports their departments.