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Darien president under investigation

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ANN MARIE AMES
March 19, 2009
— Walworth County sheriff’s deputies are investigating whether Darien Village Board President Bob Metzner impersonated a police officer, according to court documents.

Deputies have conducted several interviews and March 12 confiscated shirts and a jacket from Metzner’s house at 340 W. Beloit St., Darien, according to court documents.


The investigation was the result of complaints made in late January and early February by former village board member Shane Spoo and Darien Police Chief Steve DeVoy, documents indicate.


Metzner told The Janesville Gazette the complaints were unfounded and he had nothing to hide.


According to court documents:


-- Spoo told detectives Metzner “bragged” to Spoo about interviewing a juvenile suspect in a burglary case and getting her to confess to a crime.


The juvenile later told detectives that Metzner identified himself as a former police officer who is currently the village board president.


-- Spoo told detectives that Spoo’s hairstylist said she’d heard Metzner refer to himself as the village police chief.


Detectives interviewed the stylist and another salon customer. The women confirmed that they talked to Metzner, but their descriptions of the way he identified himself did not match.


-- DeVoy told detectives Metzner wears polo shirts with embroidered badges and the words “Village President Robert Metzner.” Metzner also has a black satin jacket that says “Village of Darien Police", DeVoy told deputies.


Detectives took the shirts and jacket, according to the search warrant return.


-- A village store clerk told detectives Metzner “flashed” his wallet at her as if it were a police badge when she questioned his authority over the police department.


The clerk could not say if she saw a badge, and the sheriff’s office did not confiscate one, according to the search warrant return.


Metzner worked as a police officer in Florida, he told the Gazette in previous campaign interviews.


He faces a challenger for his seat as village board president in the April 7 election.


Metzner and the other members of the village board are scheduled to appear in court on charges that they violated the Wisconsin Open Meetings Law.


DeVoy has been suspended with pay since Dec. 1. On March 7, village board members voted to fire DeVoy. A hearing is pending but has not been scheduled.


The board will meet in closed session at 7 tonight to learn more about the situation.



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