Latta Town Council formally fires police Chief Crystal Moore - WMBFNews.com, Myrtle Beach/Florence SC, Weather

Latta Town Council formally fires police Chief Crystal Moore

Crystal Moore (Source: WMBF News) Crystal Moore (Source: WMBF News)
The Latta Town Council held a special meeting Thursday night to terminate Crystal Moore as the town's police chief. (Source: Audrey Biesk) The Latta Town Council held a special meeting Thursday night to terminate Crystal Moore as the town's police chief. (Source: Audrey Biesk)

LATTA, SC (WMBF) – The Latta Town Council formally fired Crystal Moore from her role as the chief of police during a special meeting Thursday night.

Council members voted unanimously to terminate Moore exactly one week after she was fired from her position following an executive session of the town council.

The special meeting lasted for more than two hours at Latta Town Hall. 

“In order to bring finality to this matter, a motion is made to approve and confirm the termination of Crystal Moore as police chief," said Latta Town Administrator Jarrett Taylor, who led the discussion. 

Taylor refused to comment after the special meeting adjourned and said all comments are now directed to the town's lawyer, Andrew Lindemann out of Columbia, who was at the meeting to represent council. He said he is dealing with this because of the litigation threat made by Moore.

Moore did not want to sit in to hear the vote, saying she she did not feel well after rounds of chemotherapy. However, she did come to town hall with her family before the meeting started to thank her supporters who were there to hear the vote

“If that’s what they feel they need to do for the town, then I will in turn do what I need to for me, and my lawyer will continue our legal action toward the town," Moore said.

She added she is still in shock after all of her service to Latta.

“Justice will prevail, I know that," Moore said. "The good people out there will realize I am honest, trustworthy, loyal and very dedicated. My profession has been my livelihood. There’s many times I have missed family functions to work for this town.”

Moore said she is still running for Dillon County Sheriff and thinks everything that has transpired is only to sabotage her campaign.

The interim Police Chief for the Latta Police Department is Derick Cartwright.

In the days following the original decision to fire Moore on Sept. 8, her attorney, Columbia-based M. Malissa Burnette, stated in a letter that state law prohibits the council from firing her without taking a public vote in open session.

A strongly-worded rebuke from Latta’s attorney said Taylor does have the sole authority to fire Moore and did not do so in any form of retaliatory nature, but after a series of reprimands in her file and a suspension that failed to improve her attitude.

This is not the first time Moore has been terminated from the Latta Police Department in recent years.

Previously, Moore said the town's mayor fired her in 2014 for being openly gay after 25 years serving with the LPD. She was eventually rehired by her city.

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