South Florida Police Chief Put On Leave Amid Allegations

MARGATE, Fla. (AP) — A South Florida police chief was placed on administrative leave following an emergency city commission meeting regarding allegations that two complaints had recently been made against him.

The Margate City Commission did not specifiy what the complaints against Chief Jonathan Shaw were during Thursday's meeting, the South Florida SunSentinel reported.

Shaw’s attorney told the newspaper that the chief had done nothing wrong and had not been given a reason for his administrative leave with pay.

“Chief Shaw is being used as a political pawn in a power battle, and he looks forward to clearing his name,” attorney Tonja Haddad Coleman said.

The department's internal affairs sergeant will investigate the allegations against Shaw. Capt. Joseph Galaska was named acting chief.

Mayor Arlene Schwartz said she had no information about the accusations and that no one in the city would provide them to her.

“It’s extremely uncomfortable,” she told the newspaper after Thursday’s meeting.

Shaw has been chief of the department for three years. The agency has 154 members, including sworn, civilian, part-time and volunteer members.

Over the summer, Margate officials asked the Florida Department of Law Enforcement to investigate the “culture at the police department,” but the agency declined because it only deals with criminal investigations, the newspaper reported.