Since it is not likely that we will be able to attend this evening’s emergency meeting of the VOSJ Board of Trustees due to a previous commitment, my wife and I would like to release the following statement about now-former police chief Mike Broaddus, in lieu of making it during the Comments from the Floor portion of the meeting.
While we are not yet privy to the circumstances surrounding the decision of Mike Broaddus to step down as police chief in the Village of South Jacksonville, we are disappointed to learn of his decision.
If the decision is entirely his and is for reasons unrelated to the job, we support it and wish him the best of luck, not only as community members, but as friends. Christine and I are always just a phone call away and you and Cynthia are always welcome at our home, Mike.
If the decision is related to the job, we support it, but question what the next step is for our community and why a dedicated police officer has made the decision to walk away from this leadership opportunity. Mike Broaddus is one of the most honest people that my wife and I have met in our lives and believe that he was the right choice to lead the South Jacksonville Police Department in the wake of Richard Evans’ departure. Whomever is appointed to take over the department MUST take the plans that have been put into place over the last few months and move forward with them, because now is not the time to try to reinvent the wheel and start over.
We have experienced a great deal of change in our community since April 2nd of this year. Two elected officials have voluntarily stepped down from their posts and another was removed from his position by way of the ballot. A longtime public servant stepped down amid a cloud of controversy and possible wrongdoing, as a request to the Appellate Prosecutor’s Office to reopen the Illinois State Police investigation into South Jacksonville is still pending. We have seen the resignation of another village official who may not have been acting in the best interests of the community in her role as a public servant. It is distressing to know that we will now have to endure the departure of a sixth official in the last six months. But, whatever the circumstances surrounding Mike Broaddus’ decision, our community will press on and move forward.
I think that it is safe to speak for most – if not all – of the community when Christine and I say “Thank you” to Mike Broaddus for all that he has done over the last few years and, particularly, the last few months. We support you 100%, sir.