Kingfisher city commissioners deny fired fire chief's appeal
Kingfisher city commissioners deny an appeal for a fired former fire chief. Only one commissioner voted in favor of reinstating Randy Poindexter during a public hearing Tuesday.
Poindexter told commissioners residents are now in danger.
"The city manager does not know how to run a fire department. It is my hope that the Board of Commissioners realize this," said former Kingfisher fire chief Randy Poindexter.
The city manager fired Poindexter in September for insubordination, working outside his scheduled work hours and his self funded trip to Washington, D.C. to lobby for federal firefighter funds. The city manager says Poindexter took the trip without permission.
"That hearing was a farce," said Poindexter's attorney, Matthew Smith. "They had their mind made up already."
Even in the middle of the work day, crowds turned out to hold signs and support their former chief, who some consider their hero.
"I had to put in PTO and take a day off to support randy, "said Sunny Hernandex-Rutz. "I have 8 children to support, and to take a day off is a big thing."
Their efforts don't stop there.
The group "Concerned Citizens of Kingfisher" is circulating a petition to recall Mayor Jack Stuteville, over his refusal to back Poindexter.
They say they've already collected enough signatures.
"But we've had such an outpouring of people who want to sign, we're postponing turning in our petition until we can get them on there," said Janet Kness with Concerned Citizens of Kingfisher.
Poindexter and his attorney believe the citizens' campaign may ultimately be what gets the former chief his job back.
"It's in your hands now. Chief Poindexter 's not going anywhere, but it's in your hands now," said Smith.
Poindexter's attorney tells us looking at other legal options to fight the termination and get Poindexter's job back.
No one from the city of Kingfisher wanted to talk with us about the hearing's outcome.