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Motion calling for Westover investigation dies without a second

MORGANTOWN — A motion from Westover City Councilor Ralph Mullins calling for an independent investigation died without a second during Monday’s regular council meeting.

Mullins laid out six issues he wanted investigated, including accusations made by former Police Chief Richard Panico that Mayor Dave Johnson had interfered on behalf of Westover Police officer Aaron Dalton, a defendant in two federal civil rights lawsuits.

Mullins also claimed citizens and business owners have reported being targeted for harassment because of personal animosities with city administration.

In the end, the issue never came to a vote as nobody provided a second to Mullins’ motion.

“Put yourself in my position. Are you going to allow an investigation when you have nothing before you other than accusations, innuendos …” Councilor Duane Tatar said. “Give me something to grab ahold of and I will second that motion. But you can’t do that.”

Mullins responded that he’s ready to hand over all pertinent evidence and documentation to investigators, but not members of council and not the city attorney — all of whom he believes to be complicit.

“I’m very careful with my words and when I go on the record, I’ve got what I say I’ve got,” Mullins said.

Also on Monday, Parrotta Paving’s offer of $31,825 was selected as the lowest of six bids for a project extending Georgia Avenue beyond Price Street.

The extension of Georgia Avenue, which will cover about a 20-by-150-foot space, is intended to create access to future development of about 15 homes on large lots.

In other news, Jeff Friend was appointed to fill the 2nd Ward council vacancy.

Lastly, council voted to push Trick-or-Treat back 24 hours, from 6 p.m.- 7:30 p.m. Saturday, Oct. 30 to the same time on Sunday, Oct. 31.

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