Smith: “I guess you are going to let them get away with murder!”


A Freedom of Information Act request has netted a copy of the Police report from the Paul Smith vs. Construction Equipment Operator altercation this past Tuesday.

Paul Smith Police Report 7-May-2013

To set the record straight, the Police did their job thoroughly: they arrived on the scene, listened to the complaint, verified the legality of operating the piece of equipment on the road, made sure it was properly signed and lighted, then advised Mr. Smith and the equipment operator of their findings.  The entire process was then thoroughly documented in the report you see above.

By my count, there were five police officers involved in this altercation: two patrol officers,a Police Sergeant, and a Police Lieutenant were at the scene, as well as an additional officer from the Traffic Safety Bureau who was contacted by telephone to answer a question on the matter of the law involved.   In addition, there was a City of Sterling Heights engineering employee already at the scene before the altercation began who was there to make sure everything was being done properly.

Add in two 911 emergency operators heard on the call, and we’re up to (at least) eight total city employees involved in a needless altercation, some for an hour or more.

I’m not even going to take a serious stab at an estimate of what this all wound up costing the taxpayers.  There were 4 police vehicles summoned to the scene, one city engineering vehicle at the scene, plus at least 8 hours of labor time involved.  Suffice it to say that the dollar amount is well into the hundreds when it is all accounted for.

Then, after all this time, effort and money was expended thoroughly investigating the situation, Councilman Smith then stormed off the scene, stating “I guess you are going to let them get away with murder!”

Mr Smith campaigned in no small part by promising to help eliminate government waste.  Don’t you think he should stop creating more expenses by having the city settle his petty disputes!?

I think the one who’s getting away with murder is Councilman Paul Smith.

As always, let me know what you think in the comments below.

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Posted on May 10, 2013, in Issues and views, Paul Smith. Bookmark the permalink. 8 Comments.

  1. Very petty indeed.However, the cost is chump change
    compared to what council just paid for police cars and a salt spreader and plow truck.400 grand.

    • Police cars, plows and salt spreaders are part of what the city needs to provide service to the residents. I want the cop cars to start the first time they turn the key, I want the snow and ice taken off the roads in the winter, and I want the roads patched in the spring. It costs money to do these things, and the costs are shared by an enormous number of people. Unfortunately, Mr. Smith’s antics are *not* required for the safe and orderly operation of the city; he’s wasting time and resources.

  2. Having 2 cops at every city council meeting for 2 to 3 hours is a greater waste of resources.Do you agree?

    • I’m not sure I agree; I’m not sure I understand for certain why they’re there. One thing I can tell you is that Mr. Smith seemed to be barely in control of his temper during the last meeting; his behavior became erratic. Somehow during all of that, the one police Sergeant who was there from the beginning had two other uniformed officers with him by the end. Was it a waste of police resources? Under the circumstances I’m not so sure. Was it a waste of resources to involve at least 7 police officers and one city engineer to resolve a dispute about a completely legal activity at a construction site the other day because one man threw a temper tantrum over it? You’ll have to answer that one for yourself in the ballot box come this November.

  3. Mr. Smith made an error by calling emergency 911.There is no dispute there.He should have called the non 911 number.Who ordered 5 police, 1 captain, I sergeant and an engineer for a complaint of a front end loader driving thru a sub?I am sure Mr. Smith has no power over city employees.Mr. Smith seems to be picking fights with everyone ,and that is very sad.

  4. i don’t understand how even a slight analogy can be made between mr smith and the purchase of police cars a salt spreader and a truck . it makes no sense. how on earth can that be called wasteful spending? do you not think that those things are necessary for the operation of a city ? what do you want the police officers to do ride around on bicycles or their personal cars. this type of complaint is totally annoying to me . the city is actually spending money on its needs , nothing trite and you have nothing better to do than to criticize legitimate spending. god forbid we need to buy some new defibrillators in case an employee or a citizen has a heart attack at city hall. im sure that would not meet your criteria for proper spending either.

    • When I look at some of the city vehicles the employees are driving now — rusted out, beat up and just plain dangerous — I realize that the budget situation has been stretched as far as it can be and something has to give. When officers with 11 years on the force have their jobs on the line based on whether or not this millage passes, in my opinion the budget situation is out of control. I consider myself to be fiscally conservative, and personally I am always trying to save a buck, but there comes a time when you have to take care of the people who work for you. If one city employee dies because the vehicle he was driving on city business was not “crash worthy” and didn’t protect him or her properly — and I’ve seen at least one city-owned minivan in this condition — then it will be an unforgivable tragedy.

      Removal of the personal property tax may have been necessary to attract new business to Michigan, but it would have been nice if the funding model had been adjusted before it happened so cities weren’t left holding the bag.

  5. not to belabor the point on this thread but I probably have a different perspective than a lot of people who have been making comments on the public safety issue that is dividing sterling hts right now. I moved to sterling hts 8 yrs ago from a poverty stricken city, no need to mention the name of the city. it took me 22 yrs to save up for the funds to move my family to a respectable community. I have always taken an interest in the way my community leaders run the city. needless to say I was shocked at how good the city services are here. it was a breath of fresh air to see the police driving through my subdivision , the streets plowed in a reasonable amount of time, trash picked up, property codes enforced. and on one occasion we had to call the police for an emergency for my neighbor and they responded in less that 2 minutes !! amazing to me. amazing because I was used to never seeing police cars , and god forbid you wanted one to respond to a police call, there was a chance they would not even show at all. I was walking by properties everyday that were overgrown and terrible eyesores. praying that no one from my family would ever need the fire dept or an ambulance, because it can take well over an hour for them to respond as well.

    so I may value the services a little more than some who have had the fortune to spend their lives where public safety has always been a priority. you really will never realize what you have until it is gone. then sadly it will be too late. so maybe the people who are so eager to have the millage voted down and let the police and fire depts get gutted should give the issue a little more thought. I really believe you have become spoiled and unappreciative of what you have had for so many years. I am not thrilled about forking over an additional 150 dollars a year either. but when I look at what I am about to loose which would be almost 1/3 of the police dept and the closure of a fire station it concerns me greatly. I don’t want to take a step back again in my life. and the city has publicly stated they will not outsource for police and fire like I hear so many people wanting in the local newspapers. I don’t want the sheriff dept sticking 4 measly cars in my city to patrol it when I can upkeep my city for a reasonable fee for 6 short years !!

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