Metro-East News

Alton police chief will not be reappointed after incident

Alton aldermen on Wednesday decided not to reappoint the city’s police chief to a new term after a controversy involving the alleged mistreatment of prisoners.

Aldermen voted 4-3 against reappointing chief Jason Simmons. But Mayor Brant Walker said he plans to try to keep the police chief on the job.

The police department has been tangled in controversy since January when a pair of prisoners who were handcuffed and sitting on a bench in a holding cell were maced from across the room by an officer. The video does not seem to indicate that the men were being unruly prior to being shot in the face with the pepper spray.

The case is being investigated to determine if criminal charges should be filed against the officer.