Chief of police to retire as recall petition is complete - KLFY News 10

Chief of police to retire as recall petition is complete

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There seems to be some big changes coming to the town of Arnaudville. At a town hall meeting Tuesday night, residents learned the Chief of Police will be retiring. For over a month, residents unhappy with Chief Richard Mizzi's performance have been circulating a petition in hopes of getting enough signatures to force a recall election.

307 signatures and five weeks later, the paper work is finally in order. On Wednesday, petition leader, Jamie Huval, turned in the petition to the Registrar of Voters, who will help review the case, then submit it to the Secretary of State.

"I feel very accomplished," said Huval. "I feel like a heavy load has been lifted off of me as well as our town."

It comes a day after Mizzi announced he submitted his retirement notice to the state. But Huval says even though Mizzi may have beat them to the punch, it still gives them peace of mind.

"I learned today that he has 10 days to rethink and we want to ensure that does not happen. We want to make sure he stays out," said Huval.

For the remainder of his term, Chief Mizzi says he'll run the police department via telephone. And that's one of the reasons why the St. Landry Parish Sheriff's Office is stepping in. Sheriff Bobby Guidroz says it's about time Mizzi leaves his position. He says drug dealing, speeding, and other issues have been put on the backburner for far too long.

"Now that the Chief is hopefully out of the way-he was a hindrance, in my opinion, to our efforts in the past-then maybe we can get some things done in there," said Guidroz.

Although Arnaudville does not have a contract with the sheriff's office, deputies are patrolling the area day and night. Guidroz says for years, they've received complaints about the police department and the recall petition only reiterates the need for change.

"We're here for them," said Guidroz. "They're my constituents, also. I'm not going to commit malfeasance in office and not help people that cry out for help."

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