LITTLE RIVER-ACADEMY — Mike Hoyt turned in his resignation effective Friday to Mayor Ronnie White after only four months on the job, leaving Little River-Academy once again without a police chief.
Hoyt was hired in April and officially started the job on April 21.
Two weeks ago Hoyt, also the Calvert Police chief, originally told the City Council he would stay until the end of August, but White said Friday Hoyt told him he couldn’t handle both jobs anymore.
“We’ll just have to start looking again and find someone who is closer,” White said. “We’ll have Bell County Sheriff’s Department covering us again.”
Hoyt had a different version of what happened, which he shared Friday. “I just don’t follow the mayor’s idea of what policing is. I was going to stay, but the mayor jumped all over me today (Friday) about why the new police car isn’t in Little River yet. It’s not my fault that it’s on back order,” Hoyt said.
“I was warned in advance by different people how it was and now I’ve definitely seen it,” Hoyt said. “I don’t need the added stress.”
Hoyt talked about helping out other police departments and the Bell County Sheriff’s Department when it was needed, and said White made “smart comments about helping others” the next time he was on duty and did it in front of Nonie Tomastik, the city secretary.
“I told him I would help any officers I chose to. After all, Bell County helps us out and we should return the favor,” Hoyt said. He said he walked out of the office after that.
Another point of contention was the amount of hours Hoyt was available to work between his full-time job in Calvert and his part-time job in Little River-Academy, he said.
Hoyt said he told the Council and White from the beginning that he could only work 30 hours every two weeks. He said White told him that residents were complaining because he wasn’t in town enough.
“The police department was a disaster when I got here,” Hoyt said.
He said he did the required racial profiling report before he officially started work and didn’t ask for pay to do it.
Hoyt’s personal cellphone and vest had to be used because Little River-Academy doesn’t provide those, and he wasn’t reimbursed for his cellphone bill, he said. He said he finally got a computer through Academy Independent School District so he could do his case reports.
The laptop computer that White reportedly told him was so good was a 2000 model with Windows 2000 on it and it wouldn’t handle any new programs, Hoyt said.
“I can’t handle a mayor that isn’t abiding by the law,” Hoyt said.
He said the tags on White’s moped were expired and Hoyt told him about it. He said White went and bought stickers, put them on and said that now he was OK.
“I like the town. I still like the town. I even considered moving there and quitting my full-time job, but I decided against that,” Hoyt said.
When told of Hoyt’s comments, White seemed surprised and said, “I don’t agree with anything he said.”
White said he didn’t jump on Hoyt about the new police car. He said he just asked him during a conversation Friday morning.
“I didn’t fuss at him. I know it’s not his fault,” White said. “It was supposed to be here before now and it keeps getting delayed. If I’d jumped on him I would tell you.”
The cellphone was discussed before Hoyt was hired and White said Hoyt said he had his own cellphone to use.
“We worked with the school and helped get that computer for the department,” White said.
As for the hours Hoyt was working, White said the agreement when Hoyt was hired was for him to work 30 hours a week, not 30 hours within a two-week period.
“It’s in our meeting minutes. The Council has been asking me when he’s going to start putting in his hours and so I asked him today (Friday),” White said.