Fulton police chief retires amid scrutiny

Fulton County Police Chief Cassandra Jones, under fire after a media report questioning her leadership, will retire next month.

Jones, a 35-year veteran of the police department, will retire effective April 7. Assistant Chief Gary Stiles will serve as interim chief until a permanent replacement is named.

Jones’ announcement came a month after a report by Fox 5 that she taught a weekly criminal justice class in the middle of the day and often worked from home on Mondays. Jones told the station she did not teach the class on police time.

The station also reported she hired a chaplain to be a detective, though he didn’t report to work or have a direct supervisor.

Jones said Tuesday those reports had nothing to do with her decision to retire.

“Those reports to me are too silly to even address,” she said. “I have had a great career with Fulton County, and I’m not going to tarnish it with ignorance.”

“I’ve been policing for over 40 years,” Jones added. “I think it’s time (to retire).”

Jones joined the Fulton County Police Department in 1979 and has been chief since 2007. In announcing her retirement, County Manager Dick Anderson thanked Jones for her service and offered her “best wishes.”

County Commissioner Liz Hausmann recently called for an investigation of the department in the wake of the media reports. She said an investigation is under way, and she expects it will continue.

“I think we should always strive to make sure that our police department and all of our departments are operating efficiently and in the right manner,” she said.

Hausmann said she appreciates Jones’ service and expressed her “complete confidence” in Stiles to lead the department.

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