E. Wash. police chief fired over porn, harassment

CONNELL — A police chief in Washington state has been fired after local officials accused him of sexual harassment and viewing pornography on a government-issued cellphone.

The Tri-City Herald reports that Connell Mayor Gary Walton wrote in Police Chief Michael Kessler’s termination letter this week that his actions “constitute incompetency, inefficiency and inattention to duties.” Walton says he will lead the police department until a new chief is hired.

The city cited several misconduct problems with Kessler. Officials say he sexually harassed two women, made suggestive comments to a third and watched pornography on a city-issued cellphone. They say his staff was not up to date on training, that he failed to conduct performance reviews and hired reserve officers without council approval.

Kessler could not be reached for comment.

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