Brusly chief apologizes after theft arrest
BRUSLY - Jamie Whaley, the Brusly Police chief accused of stealing while on the job, admitted to News 2 he used a gas card issued by the town to fuel up his personal truck and boat.
Whaley spoke to News 2 about the charges against him Thursday afternoon, saying he wanted to apologize to anyone he disappointed.
"I apologize to them," Whaley said. "Sorry for any embarrassment this may have caused."
Whaley faces charges of theft and malfeasance in office. During 2013, he allegedly charged $1,122.75 to the town's fleet card.
Mayor Joey Norman said he first alerted state investigators about the alleged theft taking place last year.
"It all began with concerns that I had," Norman said. "I turned them over tot he Legislative Auditor. They have done the investigation."
Norman said Whaley gave up his fleet card in 2012 to receive a $1,000 per month car allowance. That car allowance was supposed to pay for all maintenance, gas and bills for the car used for the town.
"If some think it wasn't the right thing to do then they probably dont' want me to do my job," Norman said. "My job is to protect the town of Brusly and if I had the opportunity again, I would do it again."
Whaley said Thursday that he still doesn't plan to step down from his position unless convicted, but when asked if he would plead guilty to the charges he said he still wasn't sure.
Whaley said he had received a lot of support from the community since his arrest. He offered no explanation as to how he could uphold the laws he's accused of breaking.
"If you saw someone stealing something in Brusly, would you arrest them," Nakamoto asked Whaley.
"Yes, I would," Whaley responded. "...I took an oath to uphold the laws of South Louisiana and the town of Brusly."
"Even though you're accused of doing the same thing," Nakamoto said.
"Correct, accused is the key word," Whaley said.
"But, you just admitted to us that you did it," Nakamoto replied.
"Correct," Whaley said as he nodded.
Whaley is scheduled to appear in court for an arraignment on April 1.