Virginia Mayor Reg Brunk suspends Bryce Kennedy pending outcome of investigation
Virginia Police Chief Bryce Kennedy has been suspended from his duties following a complaint of alleged inappropriate comments on social media, that prompted an investigation by the Cass County Sheriff’s Department.
Cass County Sheriff Devron Orhn confirmed his office is investigating the allegations invovling Kennedy, but said it is not likely his departent’s investigation will be complete until sometime next week.
“On behalf of the city of Virginia and its city council, I want to state that the city administration takes the allegations against Chief Kennedy very seriously,” Virginia Mayor Reg Brunk said in a statement dated Sept. 27. “We promote and expect professionalism in the performance and conduct of all our employees. Today I suspended Chief Kennedy with pay pending the city’s investigation.”
Mayor Brunk went on to say that part-time officer Martin Fanning will be working additional hours to provide police coverage during Kennedy’s suspension.
“I have complete faith in Officer Fanning,” Mayor Brunk said. “He’s done a good job for us here for a number of years.”
The complaint, made in July, alleges that Kennedy, who has served as police chief since February 2019, sent inappropriate messages via social media. According to news accounts, the investigation is looking into whether the conversation was with a female minor.
“A lot of people are openly expressing their opinions on what they think we (the mayor and the city council) should do about this,” the mayor said. “But the facts aren’t all in yet and we have to allow the investigation to run its course.”
To that end, the mayor said he has called for a special meeting of the Virginia City Council to be held at 7:30 p.m. Friday, Oct. 2, in the council chambers of the Virginia City Hall.
“We’ll call the meeting to order in public session,” the mayor said, “but the majority of the meeting will be conducted in executive session.”
The mayor went on to say no action would be taken at Friday night’s meeting.
“If any action is to come, it wouldn’t be before the council’s next regular session on Oct. 12,” he said.
No other details regarding the case have been released by authorities. State’s Attorney John Alvarez said Monday he is awaiting the investigative report from the sheriff’s department and could not comment on the case.
Although no other information was released regarding the investigation, it has been reported that a screenshot was posted to the Keep Them Safe (KTS): Stop Sexual Assault facebook page regarding the alleged incident. Although not a KTS case, the screenshot reveals a conversation between a uniformed police officer (who is pictured) and another person in which the officer is asking that their conversation be kept quiet.