Little movement on West York police situation

Sean Philip Cotter

A nearly hour-long closed-door session during the West York council meeting Monday evening yielded no immediate changes in the borough police department's recent shakeup.

The suspension of Justin Seibel, the department's chief, was barely mentioned. The council voted with little discussion to affirm Matthew Millsaps as the acting chief. Millsaps had already assumed that position in a temporary capacity.

None of the handful of residents in attendance spoke up about the police matter.

West York Police Chief Justin Seibel has been placed on administrative leave, a borough official confirmed on Tuesday, Sept. 6, 2016.. 
(John A. Pavoncello photo)

After about an hour, council president Shawn Mauck adjourned for an executive session behind closed doors. After the seven council members and borough solicitor Margaret Driscoll spent more than 50 minutes in a back room, Mauck said the meeting was about legal and personnel matters.

Mauck told The York Dispatch it was about the situation involving Seibel, who did not attend the meeting, but added he couldn't comment further because it's an ongoing matter.

West York puts police chief on leave, names acting chief

Seibel was placed on paid administrative leave in a special meeting  Sept. 3. Mauck has said that he legally isn't able to discuss the reasons behind that action.

Seibel's attorney, Ed Paskey, told the Dispatch last week that his client hadn't been given any notice that he's being subject to discipline.

Quick resolution possible for West York's police chief

Millsaps, who attended the meeting but didn't follow the council members into the back room for the executive session, said he also could not comment further on the matter.

Millsaps has been a part-time officer with the department since 2006 and continues in a part-time capacity as acting chief, Mauck said.

Seibel, despite being chief, is represented by the same union that represents the other West York officers — Teamsters Local 776.

Local 776's business agent, William Olmeda, has not returned phone messages seeking comment. A press liaison at the Teamsters' national office in Washington, D.C., said Local 776 officials are the only ones who can comment because the union's locals are autonomous.

—  Contact Sean Cotter or on Twitter at@SPCotterYD.

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