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Officer may lose job after church donation

MINCO, Okla. — A Minco police officer’s position hangs in the balance after accepting a small offering from his church. Zach Davis feels he is a pawn in the middle of ongoing disputes between City Council and the police department.

Davis wears his uniform proudly and has been an unpaid reserve officer for almost a year.

Now his post is jeopardy because of a benevolence offering from his church.

“My church family that I’ve been apart of for about 12 years came together after I lost my job in April,” Davis said.

He was given $400 to help make ends meet when he lost his full-time job.

According to the oath he took as a sworn officer, accepting it– was illegal.

Now, City Council will decide if he’s removed from the force.

“If I thought it was unlawful, I wouldn’t have done it, there’s no way,” Davis said. “I’ve been in law enforcement for four years now and people offer us things all the time. I’ve turned down everything but, this is my church family. They care, there was no, expectation of service from me to them.”

Mayor Watson Mitchell said, “Once you take the oath of office, you can’t take money or presents from anybody. We’re more or less trying to get that stopped around here.”

Mitchell says this ethics clause is meant to protect the integrity of the position.

“Well if you give somebody money, they’re probably not going to give you a ticket, that’s simply what it boils down to,” Mitchell said.

Dan McMillan is another resident who tried to donate money to reserve officers.

He got choked up thinking about the officers they’ve recently loss.

Sgt. Mycal Prince died in Afghanistan and Brian Woolard died from brain tumor two weeks ago.

“The reserve police are working 10-30 hours a week volunteer,”  McMillan said. “They have jobs, wives and kids and they give their time so I wanted to give back to them. The bake sale he planned raised $1,400 but City Council would not accept the check.”

While Davis believes this punishment is political, the mayor said every officer has to follow the law.

City Council will vote on whether Davis will keep his job at Monday’s meeting.