Bailey requests grievance hearing to fight demotion

North Myrtle Beach, SC - NORTH MYRTLE BEACH, SC (WMBF) - Officials in North Myrtle Beach have confirmed former Public Safety Director William Bailey has requested a grievance hearing to fight his recent demotion within the city.

North Myrtle Beach City Administrator John Smithson says Bailey's hearing has been scheduled for Monday at 9 a.m., at which that time he is expected to make his case against being demoted from chief to lieutenant of the North Myrtle Beach Public Safety Department.

Bailey came under brief fire earlier in the year after a back-up gun was stolen from his car. Bailey told investigators it was locked in his glove compartment, but an in-depth investigation revealed the glove compartment in which it was stored did not have a lock.

Horry County Police were dispatched to Bailey's home after the director reported two of his personal vehicles had been broken into between 10 p.m. Dec. 27 and 8 a.m. Dec. 28. Bailey told police he became suspicious of criminal activity after noticing his truck, parked in his driveway, had been left unlocked throughout the night.

After opening the driver's side door of the truck, a police report states Bailey found papers thrown over the seats and the glove compartment and center console opened. A handgun stored in the glove compartment, Horry County Police say, was among the items taken from the vehicle.

Bailey later discovered his wife's car, parked inside of a garage, had also been tampered with. Items were strewn across the inside of the vehicle, but Bailey was unable to identify any stolen items.

Further questioning of Bailey's family revealed his son discovered what he calls a "suspicious man" in the neighborhood around 2:30 a.m. on Dec. 21. When Bailey's son pulled over his vehicle to question why the man was in the area, he said he was visiting his girlfriend.

The man then proceeded to reach into his camouflage backpack, for what Bailey's son presumed to be a gun, and drove off. Bailey's son told police he returned to his home, grabbed two baseball bats, and unsuccessfully attempted to track the unidentified man down.

North Myrtle Beach officials released a statement revealing Bailey had been placed on administrative leave after an investigation revealed Bailey's glove box did not have a lock on it. As stated in an incident report, Bailey's gun could not have been safely stored inside of his truck.

Bailey's grievance hearing is open to the public.

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