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Belleair Police Chief under fire by one of his own

Belleair Police Chief under fire by one of his own
Posted Wednesday, August 20th 2014 @ 5am

BELLEAIR, Fla. ( - Belleair Police Chief Thomas Edwards is the target of numerous allegations ranging from mismanagement to ethical breaches and possible criminal acts.

The person making those allegations is his department's only detective James Howard.

According to records obtained by 8 On Your Side, Howard first approached Belleair Town Manager Micah Maxwell in July 2013 to privately voice concerns about Edwards.

Among those concerns: destruction of criminal evidence, the changing of police reports by people other than the officer on the scene, and the Edwards' alleged pressuring of Howard to conduct background checks without having any particularly case to attach it to, a practice Howard insists is considered improper by the Florida Department of Law Enforcement.

Maxwell summarized the concerns Howard first voiced in July 2013 in a letter that he sent to the chief the following day.

The chief essentially ended up investigating himself, found no wrongdoing, and that was that.

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