Retaliation? Officer Removed From Schedule After Sparking Corruption Probe

whistleblower

A part-time police officer for Ohioville Borough who sparked a criminal investigation into the town’s chief, has now been removed from the department’s schedule “indefinitely.”

Officer Nevin Beatty went to the Pennsylvania State Police last August, alleging he discovered the town’s Chief may be bilking taxpayers out of tens of thousands of dollars. According to law enforcement sources familiar with the ongoing investigation, Ohioville Police Chief Ronald Lutton has been accused of altering and resubmitting court appearance slips and falsifying time cards. Sources say evidence turned over to State Troopers by Officer Beatty allegedly showed the improprieties had been taking place since the 1990s. Documents now in possession of the State Police allegedly show Lutton had been resubmitting court appearance slips from cases up to a dozen times each, and that the dates on those slips appear to have been altered. Chief Lutton has been suspended with pay for nearly six months, while authorities continue their investigation.

Ohioville Mayor John Szatkiewicz told the Beaver Countian that he believes the allegations against Chief Lutton are untrue. “It sounds like a witch hunt to me. I think highly of the chief, because I’ve seen him out in the parking lot at 5am, two hours before he was suppose to be there. He has an office in his home, he’s out all the time, he gets called constantly. It wouldn’t surprise me if he’s still getting called even though he’s suspended.”

Sources say officials with the town first became aware that Beatty had gone to the State Police in August, after receiving an “anonymous phone call” tipping them off. Officials tell the Beaver Countian that “part-time” Officer Beatty saw his hours reduced significantly by Assistant Chief Mark Smilek following the revelation. Sources say Beatty had been averaging over 40 hours per week with the department for years.

Just weeks later, sources say Mayor Szatkiewicz had Assistant Chief Smilek issue a directive requiring all officers to visit him at his home one day each week to discuss department scheduling. On October 16th, Borough Council overturned the Mayor’s directive at its public meeting, deeming it “inappropriate.” Sources say that on October 18th, Officer Beatty, who had been urged by a councilmember not to sign the directive, was called by Mayor Szatkiewicz who informed the officer he was being placed on an unpaid suspension for insubordination.

It was during Beatty’s suspension, say sources, that the Mayor began contacting citizens of the town asking them to file complaints against the Officer. Mayor Szatkiewicz subsequently produced over a half dozen written complaints against Officer Beatty. But town officials tell the Beaver Countian that many of those complaints didn’t check out. “At least 3 of the complaints handed in by the Mayor came from incidents where Officer Beatty wasn’t even on duty at the time,” said one town official, who spoke on condition they not be quoted by name while discussing personnel matters. “I’ve had several people tell me they’ve been approached by the Mayor who told them he wanted to get rid of [Officer] Beatty.”

At a public meeting following Beatty’s suspension, several of those individuals appeared in person to register their complaints. “The mayor had a lot of residents come in, all the years I’ve been there the only time we had a crowd before that is when we tried to pass a junkyard ordinance,” said the official. “There’s never a soul there. All these people were talking about profiling, this and that, all about Officer Beatty.”

Councilman Richard Decker, Chairman of the town’s Police Committee, spoke up at the meeting in Officer Beatty’s defense. “Yes I remember that,” said Councilman Decker when reached by phone. “It was during a public meeting after we had just reinstated Officer Beatty from a 10 day suspension for insubordination the Mayor had placed him on. I just wanted to make sure everyone understood that it’s my position as the Police Committee Chair that I’ve had nothing but praise for Officer Beatty. He’s a very smart individual, he’s very thorough, and I find him to be very fair [...] We’ve had some disgruntled residents since the Chief has been suspended, so it’s a tough line to walk [...] It’s been tough to squash rumors started about Officer Beatty.”

Mayor Szatkiewicz denied contacting people and encouraging them to file complaints against Officer Beatty. “Nope, you tell them to tell me that,” Mayor Szatkiewicz told the Beaver Countian. “I’m involved with 8 veteran’s organizations, how many are you involved with? What branch of the service did you ever serve in? Who writes your paycheck?”

One of those complaints, filed on October 20th by Ohioville resident William C. Pittser, detailed an alleged incident involving Officer Beatty that took place back on July 17th. Pittser alleged Officer Beatty “rapped” on his windshield during a traffic stop, causing “a small crack right along the bottom of the inspection stickers.” A search of court records shows Pittser was charged with “Operating A Vehicle Without A Valid Inspection” by Officer Beatty on that date, a summary charge he was found guilty of by District Judge Tim Finn on August 30th.

“I did my job,” said Officer Beatty when asked about the incident. “I conducted a traffic stop. I did what I should have done under the vehicle code, I summarily removed an expired inspection sticker. I didn’t do anything that I shouldn’t have done, I didn’t do anything improper. I didn’t crack Mr. Pittser’s windshield.”

Pittser went to the District Attorney’s Office seeking to file a private criminal complaint against Officer Beatty over the incident from last July. “He wanted to file a misdemeanor charge against Officer Beatty,” said First Assistant District Attorney Ahmed Aziz. “I determined that even if what he was saying were true, it would not have been a misdemeanor offense [...] I did not approve his complaint.” District Attorney Anthony Berosh told the Beaver Countian that Pittser may have been able to file a private criminal complaint for a summary offense, but he never followed through. “He never submitted the paperwork” said Berosh. “There are no pending criminal charges against [Officer Beatty] that I know of.”

But pending criminal charges are exactly what purportedly saw Officer Beatty removed from the town’s schedule last Friday. An official with Ohioville Borough told the Beaver Countian that Assistant Chief Mark Smilek alleged he was informed by Ahmed Aziz that Beatty would soon be facing criminal charges. “Paul Steff [the town's solicitor] advised that Beatty be removed from the schedule as a result of what everyone was told by Smilek. If Beatty isn’t facing criminal charges then we really have a mess,” said the official.

According to law enforcement sources, statements provided to the Pennsylvania State Police by witnesses alleged Assistant Chief Mark Smilek was aware of the alleged misconducted by Chief Lutton, and had attempted to prevent the State Police’s involvement in the investigation. The Beaver Countian made multiple attempts to reach Assistant Chief Smilek for comment, leaving messages for him at the Police Department and on his cellphone voicemail. Those messages were not returned.

“The matter involving [Chief] Lutton is an ongoing investigation and I have cooperated fully,” Officer Beatty told the Beaver Countian. “I’m now viewed as an interloper down there, I’m now a pariah [...] It’s difficult to beat the archaic good old boy mentality.”

Officers in the Ohioville Borough Police Department were made to sign a directive, ordering them not to discuss the suspension of Chief Lutton. Officials for Ohioville Borough say they were advised not to discuss the matter publicly, anticipating a whistleblower lawsuit being filed against the town due to alleged retaliatory actions taken against Officer Beatty. The Beaver Countain was able to report these allegations of public corruption by guaranteeing the anonymity of those who cooperated with our investigation.

 

40 comments

  1. i dont know how john paul is able to find out all the stuff he does but fuck wow again

    (0)
  2. OUTSTANDIMG!!!! SUPER!!! VERY GOOD REPORTING!!! KEEP UP THE GOOD WORK!!! OTHER GOOD LAW ENFORCEMENT KEEP DOING GOOD STAY STRAIGHT HAT’S OFF TO U!!!

    (0)
  3. sounds to me that he was removed due to his own alleged criminal charges,( which you failed to comment on those charges), not for sparking a probe of corruption.

    (0)
    • “There are no pending criminal charges against [Officer Beatty] that I know of” says the District Attorney.

      Actually reading the article and understanding the words and concepts expressed therein will help you avoid looking like such an idiot next time, puffin.

      (0)
  4. officer removed cuz a PRIVATE CRIMINAL COMPLAINT from someone he had traffic stop with that wasnt even approved by DA?!?! ya ok

    (0)
  5. SpeakTheTruthToo

    I am not sure what being involved with 8 veteran organizations or serving our country in the military has to do with your alleged corruption issues Mayor. That is called deflection, and it makes me think of a 6 year old kid who just got in trouble in school for acting out, but says to mommy and daddy, but I got all As on my report card.

    (0)
  6. Sounds like the newbie, rookie decided he was gonna rock the boat and it backfired. Unless he was encouraged by the assistant, so they could both get a taste of gold. Bust out the D-Con.

    (0)
  7. I’ve known Nevin since before he was a cop. The guy has never backed down from anyone in his life. He doesn’t care what people think of him. Even his friends know not to put him in a position where he’d have to choose between them and doing his job. He doesn’t play favorites, that’s why people hate him.

    (0)
  8. Chief Lutton was suspended when he was accused of stealing funds. Assistant Chief Smilek was just accused of knowing what was going on and trying to hinder the investigation. He is now going to be suspended with pay? This is a joke. Residents of Ohioville should not stand for this. It’s obvious that the department is corrupt, and this corruption has been going on for years. Council should also be held accountable for not catching this sooner. Officer Beatty did what any decent person would do, and now he is being punished. The Ohioville Mayor, Council, and police department should be replaced immediately. Just another example of an organization within Ohioville Borough being made to look like a bunch of idiots (remember the fire department being mentioned a couple of years ago). So glad I don’t live there anymore.

    (0)
  9. That was another one Nevin handled in the FD.

    (0)
  10. Officer douchebag in my book NO GOOD! Every one I know has had an altercation with this man and all were being harassed from old to young people. I will do e everything I can to permit this a hole from being an officer in the town I live in. Never had an issue until super hero came into play now look everything is F up!

    (0)
  11. Chad…There was an issue before ” super hero” came into play. You have the possibility of an officer stealing money for close to 20 years. The is not about personal feelings towards Beatty. The issue is stolen money. Thank you officer Beatty for bringing this issue to light and saving the taxpayers dollars. Without officer Beatty the stealing could have continued on for many more years to come. It could not have been easy for officer Beatty to come forward with this information. Instead of tearing him apart, all taxpayer should be thanking him.

    (0)
  12. Thank you Officer Beatty. You stopped something that no one else had the courage to do. Broken windshields are not the problem here. The lost tens of thousands of dollars is what the focus needs to stay on.

    (0)
  13. Smilek has been a bad cop since his days in B.T. He has had numerous issues during his short stint here. Anyone remember?

    (0)
  14. John Szatkiewicz and the Ohioville Borough Council all need to be replaced . If Chief Lutton did do something wrong they all were involved . and let it go on for 20 years .and we all know who has been on Council for years . TIME FOR A CHANGE OHIOVILLE . Good luck Ron .. you know who your friends are ….

    (0)
  15. Ohioville has a police department lol, Luton is a douce, his sons are too, and smilek is a creep, the mayor is clueless I thought the last one sainovich was clueless thus guy is too, council over all isn’t that bad, watch what you wish for…

    (0)
  16. I heard that a few of the other part time officers were raising a stink about beatty being removed. Doesn’t matter though beattys gone and that’s what happens when you bully the comunity you are supposed to be serving. They really need to do better testing for police.

    (0)
  17. How about some investigating of Rochester Borough PD

    (0)
  18. BEATTY FOR MAYOR!!! Ohioville has already lost the money that may have been stolen by Lutton now we are going to have to pay Beatty big bucks if he sues.

    (0)
  19. @ glenna I am not talking about him Turning anybody in for stealing i am talking about him harrasing ppl of this community that he is supposed to serve and protect. If i had to call 911 for an emergency and i knew this guy was on duty I would ask for another officer from a surronding community to please assist him because this guy is NOT A NICE PERSON.

    (0)
    • Indeed. Officer Beatty has a reputation of being NOT A NICE PERSON to all the idiots, creeps and crooks in the towns that he serves. Which of those categories do you belong to?

      (0)
  20. Mr Pittser…If Officer Beatty cracked your windshield trying to remove your EXPIRED inspection sticker then OWELL!!!!! If you were not driving the car around….he would not have been removing the sticker. You are to blame Mr. Pittser. You broke the law! Unbelievable how people love to blame others for their actions.

    (0)
  21. Mayor’s step son was arrested for DUI by guess who? The same Police Officer he just suspended. Looks like the Mayor places his family and personal priorities above those of Public Safety. When is the election?

    (0)
  22. Beatty is a no good cop. He has harassed and tormented so many people in the amount of time that he has been employed for Ohioville. He has actually lied on police reports. He beat up a man in his 60s and then completely lied on the report of what happened. Do you all know that he pulled the same crap at his other job??? He got his chief fired and then he was promoted to a seargant. Hmmmmm….Maybe he wanted to be the next Chief in Ohioville. Wake up all you people sticking up for him!!!! He is BAD NEWS!! Keep him out!!

    (0)
  23. Oh yeah Guest….He has been a very nasty douche to plenty of innocent people too. I know a lot of people that were pulled over by him for no reason. He would make up a reason to pull them over just to see if they had been drinking. Who wants to deal with that after working a 12 hour shift and just wanting to go to home and go to bed. He is a PROFILER!!!

    (0)
  24. I have watched Beatty on many of nights pull multiple different cars over every 5 mins. He only pulled them over to check for drunk drivers. He had no reason to be pulling over all these ppl. I feel that many of innocent people of Ohioville have been harassed by this man. He is a liar and a snake!

    (0)
  25. Officer Beatty is not a bad policeman. If his chiefs weren’t doing things that were illegal they wouldn’t have to worry. The residents from Ohioville are used to the “good ole boys” patrolling the borough & don’t like when someone actually does what they were hired to do. The only reason he’s got the bad rap is because he followed orders from his superior! The residents should be glad to have an officer as professional as Officer Beatty. They won’t realize what an asset he is to the borough until it’s too late. The residents and borough should be thanking him for having the balls to stand up for the right thing unlike some others that knew it was going on for years and didnt have the balls to do it. Why is it that someone who saw something bad being done and the council and mayor are punishing him for doing the right thing? If they had any balls, they would have protected officer Beatty instead of treating him like he was the one that broke the law and stole from the residents of Ohioville. And Mr. Mayor, no one cares that you’re involved with eight different veterans organizations or Lincoln Park. U are representing the Borough of Ohioville and it’s residents start supporting your Borough.

    (0)
  26. @ Guest 3…. “Good ole boys” really???? Do you even live in ohioville???? Have you ever been harassed by officer douchebag for NO reason??????

    (0)
  27. I am not a resident of Ohioville, I do not know Officer Beatty. However, I do give him credit for doing the right thing and reporting his superior. I’m sure he knew there would be fallout by doing so. Just like John Paul coming forward to report Sheriff David’s threats, and the woman from Beaver speaking up about Officer McCoy’s behavior. Apparently someone has to police the Police.

    (0)
  28. Way to take a stand for the cititzens of the community! It will be a long tough battle, but worth it if you can stay strong through the “ugliness” of unjust actions/comments.
    It sounds like corruption is in full force in Ohioville. The Boys N Blue stick together no doubt. It’s not often one challenges the “law” and comes out on top…so best wishes to you Officer Beatty.
    Stand strong for what you believe in and know your efforts are appreciated by many.

    (0)
  29. I have lived in ohioville for many years and sat back and watched all of the small town politics, no more or less than anywhere else. I have heard all of the stories regarding bad police and bad people which are everywhere, not just in ohioville. Some of the things that i have observed recently. More complaints regarding the police force, probably due to the increase in traffic violations and dui’s recorded by officer beatty, have these problems been in ohioville all along or is it just coincidence since his hire? More complaints regarding harassment and policemen overstepping their boundaries, coincidence? Our elected official being elected because he also has a junk yard in his front yard? coincidence? Our chief being investigated the same way another chief was investigated due to one particular officer? coincidence? I havent had any problems with any of the police in our area but i would like to see the beaver countian report on our officers past employment history and why they arent currently at their old jobs….that is if the beaver countian doesnt have a biased opinion of the current situation.

    (0)
    • Yes….Please investigate other officers past histories. Please investigate all the complaints that have been filed against Officer Smilek for example. Please investigate why he left Beaver County to go to some high paying job in Washington, and then mysteriously came back to little old Beaver County. Be careful what you wish for because you may not like what is uncovered. I cannot believe that so many people are upset about an officer doing his job, and how many people still support a police Chief that may be found to be corrupt and have duped tax payers out of tens of thousands of dollars. The IQ of Ohioville residents cannot be that high……bunch of backwoods hicks.

      (0)
  30. All of you uninformed people that don’t even live here don’t a have a sinlge damn clue what goes on here. First off Beatty blew the whistle when he wasn’t getting enough money and he just wants to Chief in ohioville. He IS NOT a good cop what-so-ever. Just another case of Ohioville hiring the scum let go from other police departments. Of course you won’t report on that, or on all the harassment alleged against officer Beatty that I know for a fact goes on. Playing basketball one day he stops angrily accuses one of my friends of being a drug dealer and tried to search his truck illegaly. Then he’ll pull people over for bull reasons (exhaust leak my ass) just to see what they’re up to. He profiles all the teens in the area as bad kids. We don’t do any harm at all to the community and just want to be left alone. Not to mention his own corrupt doings. Like lieing on all those speeding tickets just so he could get what he needed in for the month. You people think he’s some saint for blowing some whistle while he sat back and took money like a good boy until they didn’t pay him what he wanted. Lutton is a good guy I live right by him. His wife is constantly sick, and he worked his ass off to make money for her to get better. He also gave Beatty his job because he was down and out after being fired from the Midland PD. Ron Lutton is the ONLY Lutton I can say I approve of with the rest of his family are some jerks especially his crazy cat-lady of a sister. Beatty doesn’t deserve to be a cop, he’s nothing but a thug and we don’t need him here wrecking police cars and blowing cigar smoke into little kids faces like I’ve witnessed first hand.

    (0)
  31. @guest……are you a ghetto rat? Have you ever been to ohioville? Really not that “backwoods” here. Welfare rate out here in the ” backwoods” is no where near what it is in other areas of Bc. The reason is…most residents of ohioville have college degrees and WORK for a living!!!! Therefore our IQs must NOT be that low!!!!!! RETARD!

    (0)
  32. SpeakTheTruthToo

    Yeah, your IQ’s are so high out there that the Western Beaver School District is lighting the state on fire! I must have missed the report about Western Beaver having the highest PSSA scores in the entire state.

    (0)
  33. @speak the truth….stfu!!!!! You have no clue.

    (0)
  34. Smitty you are right the mayors son frank harper does have a dui hearing coming up and the mayor is just pissed off cause Beatty will not drop the charges like he has asked him to do so Beatty is being punished for taking a repeat offender of the streets. …thanks nevin beatty for making our streets safer to drive on and as for the mayor he’s nothing but a loser for wanting drunks on our roads

    (0)

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

*

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>