The Dadeville City Council did not discuss its police department procedures or recognize the complaint it received at the last city council meeting Tuesday.
At the Nov. 12 city council meeting, Melinda Silmon and her son DeMico Silmon told the council DeMico was pulled over by Dadeville police officer John Sutherlin with his gun drawn but Sutherlin quickly left without an explanation. Both were concerned how the police department and Dadeville Mayor Wayne Smith responded to the incident.
City attorney Robin Reynolds told the Silmons he would do his own investigation and make recommendations to the council.
Smith told The Outlook after the council meeting Tuesday he thought the matter was over, but Melinda Silmon said it’s not.
“They have assumed it’s over since the beginning,” Silmon said. “It’s a long way from being over for me.”
Silmon said she has not spoken to Smith since the incident last month and no one from the city has reached out to her.
“The last time I spoke to Wayne Smith was Oct. 24 when he was opening his mail in his office,” Silmon said. “At the council meeting where we spoke, he didn’t speak with me there.”
Silmon said she did call city hall to get on the agenda but called back to be taken off the agenda for Tuesday’s meeting because she couldn’t make it.
Smith said after the meeting Dadeville police chief Jonathan Floyd has retrained officers on the correct procedure for felony traffic stops.
“That is when you tell a person what they’re being stopped for and when they’re no longer a person of interest you tell them they no longer are a person of interest,” Smith said.
The council approved a liquor license for Aztecas Mexican Grill in a 3-1 vote. Councilmember Roy Mathis voted against because the owner was once arrested for driving under the influence of alcohol.
“The (Alcoholic Beverage Control) Board says we can deny the license because of an individual applying for a license has a prior conviction involving the use of alcohol or controlled substance,” Mathis said. “I am concerned about the location of the place because (it’s located on U.S. Highway) 280.”
Mathis said his concern is the potential for drivers under the influence on a high-traffic highway.
The restaurant is located at 18092 U.S. Hwy 280, which used to house Las Posadas Mexican Grill.
“I did some research,” Mathis said. “There are over 80,000 people dying in the United States every year because of alcoholism.”
Harrelson responded the council doesn’t need to run off other Dadeville businesses. Mathis said he was also concerned about training employees to not serve minors and cutting off intoxicated patrons. Smith told Mathis he is an Alabama Responsible Vendor Program master trainer and can go around the state training employees to not sell to minors or the intoxicated.
“So far in Alabama there is no limit to the amount of judgment that can be given,” Smith said.
Every company that serves alcohol has to have trained employees, according to Smith. City attorney Robin Reynolds asked Floyd to contact the council if the police department arrests anyone due to alcohol incidents or receives complaints from around the restaurant.
Councilmember Brownie Caldwell was not at the meeting.
In other action, the city council:
• Delayed actionon nuisance property complainton West Lafayette Street
• Was updated on the courthouse square project. Smith said the expected completion date is mid-January
• Unanimously voted to keep Keebler Park’s name instead of adding “arboretum and preserve” in front of it
• Was reminded of Christmas holidays for Dec. 24 and 25 and New Year’s Day
• Changed its scheduled Dec. 24 meeting to Dec. 23
• Approved its employee one-time pay increase for Christmas bonuses
• Approved Feb. 21 through 23 for the severe weather preparedness salex tax holiday
• Approved recreation center rentals
Staff writer Cliff Williams contributed to this story.