• Last modified 629 days ago (Nov. 3, 2022)


3 more cops quit

Peabody losing its last full-time police officer;
2 deputies also resign

Staff writer

An exodus of law enforcement officers is continuing with resignations of Peabody’s last full-time police officer and two county sheriff’s deputies.

Caitlin Brunner gave Peabody city council members two weeks’ notice of her resignation last week.

Her final day on the job will be Nov. 5. A Peabody officer since November 2020, she has accepted a position with El Dorado police department.

When Peabody council member Rick Reynolds was contacted Thursday about the city’s plans for replacing its police officers, he said city council members would meet to review applications.

Asked how many applications the city had, Reynolds hung up the phone.

Council member Catherine Weems said the meeting has not yet taken place.

The city’s website lists openings for police chief and full- and part-time officers.

Until Peabody hires new police officers, the town of 1,200 will be dependent on the sheriff’s office to provide law enforcement.

The sheriff’s department will be down two deputies. Derrick Fetrow quit last week and Travis Wilson has submitted his resignation. He said he plans to work for Arlie’s Collision Specialists in Marion.

He, Undersheriff Larry Starkey, and deputies might have to work extra hours to adequately cover Peabody’s needs, Sheriff Jeff Soyez said.

“I guarantee I can get this,” Soyez said. “We will take care of every call.”

His staff has been instructed to phone him or Starkey if needed.

Soyez said a potential new deputy has been identified and offers have been made for other deputies.

Peabody’s police department has seen a rash of resignations in the past six weeks as well as the retirement of former police chief Bruce Burke.

Burke was a 23-year veteran with the department.

Officers Josh Wilson and part-time officer Robert Bartlett, who now works for the sheriff’s department, submitted resignations at that time.

The retirement and resignations sprang from then-mayor Tom Spencer’s statements in a meeting that he “wanted druggies out of the city legally or illegally.”

Spencer resigned as mayor after the officers announced they were leaving.

Last modified Nov. 3, 2022