Starkville police chief suspended for two weeks

Starkville Police Chief Frank Nichols

Faith Lifer
Staff Writer

Starkville Police Chief Frank Nichols will be suspended without pay for two weeks following what the city’s Board of Aldermen cited as a “personnel matter.”

The Board of Aldermen announced a special call meeting early Monday to discuss an unspecified personnel matter.

Ward 1 Alderman Ben Carver was not present during Monday’s meeting.

“We have before us mostly an executive session,” Mayor Lynn Spruill said as she opened the meeting.

Almost an hour and a half later, the board ended the executive session.

“The board, in executive session, took action,” Spruill said.

City Attorney Chris Latimer read the board’s decision aloud.

“The board took action to suspend Starkville Police Chief Frank Nichols, without pay, for two weeks and place him on six-month probation, effective immediately,” Latimer read.

The board appointed Captain Troy Outlaw as interim police chief during Chief Nichols’ two-week suspension.

Other than the board’s action, what was discussed behind closed doors remains unknown.

Spruill said the probation period, as with all city employees, is a means of monitoring job performance.

Spruill could make no further comments about the decision.

SPD Public Information Officer Brandon Lovelady said he and other members of SPD could not speak on anything personnel-related.

Nichols, who has served as an officer in the department since 1992 and as police chief since February 2014, has not released a statement on the matter.