Comments made by Mono County and Town of Mammoth officials at a recent meeting hinted that Mammoth Police Chief Randy Schienele might be leaving his position. The Chief, embattled by investigations and public criticism over the past year, did confirm that discussions for his retirement are underway.
Officials present at the Town-County Liaison meeting last week said they heard Mono Supervisor Byng Hunt say something to the effect that since Mammoth’s Police Chief is leaving, what would the town do?
Town Council member Jo Bacon, who also attended that meeting, confirmed what Hunt said. She added that in regard to the Police Chief’s departure, Town Manager Rob Clark said, “There has been no announcement of any such thing.” Today (Monday), Manager Clark confirmed Hunt’s remarks but said he could not comment.
When asked to elaborate on what might be going on regarding the Police Chief, Councilmember Bacon and Town Manager Clark said it is a “closed session item.
So, apparently council members have been discussing Chief Schienle’s employment and a move toward retirement. When asked about Supervisor Hunt’s reported remark, Chief Schienele said, “There is no date set for my retirement. I am discussing it. I’m in the very preliminary stages.”
Chief Schienle recently marked his 29th year in law enforcement on April 11th. The Chief said his goal is to work 30 years. He repeated that “Yes, there are discussions, but nothing is set.”
While officials aren’t saying what prompted closed door discussions, the secret talks with the Police Chief do come on the heels of a stormy year or two with investigations into officer behavior, a Grand Jury investigation into the Chief and his department, and two of his officers charged in a Bishop bar brawl.