Anonymous letter says group of LPD officers have lost confidence in the chief; call her a "bully"

Letter was addressed to union president

LAKELAND, Fla. - An anonymous letter signed by a group of concerned police union members, calls for a no confidence vote on their leader, Chief Lisa Womack.

The letter makes bold accusations about the chief, calling her a bully, vindictive, and they "no longer wish to be subjected to her continued lack of leadership."

The letter is addressed to Union President Nick Marolda.

"I wasn't aware of it until this letter," he said. "I don't know if the PBA members signed it, I don't know if a police officer signed it, a retiree, a recent person who was just fired."

The Lakeland Police Department is still healing from multiple scandals, including the major sex scandal that brought down about two dozen officers.

Then there's former Officer Julio Pagan, who's still in jail accused of rape. The department is also dealing with the state attorney who repeatedly called out the chief and her leadership.

The anonymous letter comes nearly two weeks after the LPD Advisory Board issued 21 recommendations to improve the scandal-plagued department.

If it's confirmed that the letter actually came from union members and they decide to take a no confidence vote, it would not be the first time. Five years ago, the majority of the union cast a no confidence vote on the last Chief, Roger Boatner.

Despite the views of his officers Chief Boatner remained on the job.

LPD Sergeant Gary Gross says it's difficult to asses a complaint that is anonymous.

"We want to keep moving forward and we are. That's why this took us by surprise, especially after the chief just met with the PBA board and there was no mention whatsoever of this," he said.

Marolda plans to research the letter and find out if it's truly the pulse of the department. He wishes his members would come to him with problems and quit writing anonymous letters.

"We're not at that position to move forward with a non confidence vote, until I have more and know that my members are even asking for one," he said.

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