East St. Louis mayor says PD chief retired not fired

According to city, former chief Perry retired on Jan. 18
Published: Jan. 27, 2023 at 2:02 PM CST
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ST. LOUIS, Mo. (KMOV) - The City of East St. Louis said former police chief Kendall Perry retired, contradicting reports stating Perry was fired.

On Thursday, East St. Louis Mayor Robert Eastern III issued the following press release:

“East St. Louis Mayor Robert Eastern III recently announced that Police Chief Kendall Perry has officially retired from the East St. Louis Police Department and that Cantrell Patterson, the former Assistant Police Chief, will now serve as the East St. Louis Chief of Police. Before Perry’s retirement announcement, he faced a disciplinary hearing to show cause for certain activities under his administration scheduled for January 17. After failing to attend the hearing, Perry effectively retired on January 18, 2023.”

Perry acknowledged to News 4 that he was fired. Eastern told News 4 he will provide more information regarding a series of resignations and firings going on within the city government in the coming days.

“Chief Perry, actually, resigned his position and he did not get fired,” said Dr. Debra Powell, former East St. Louis mayor and advisor to Mayor Eastern. “Oftentimes you hear people talk about how they’re not getting the services that they want, and then the minute someone who’s in a position of authority decides to do something about it, then the political stick gets cried, ‘Oh, it’s political.’ No, it’s giving service to the people.”

Violence has been decreasing in East St. Louis, according to Illinois State Police.

“It certainly damages the morale of the department,” said longtime resident Marie Franklin, who’s running for mayor and is a former ISP trooper. “Decisions are being made, seemingly, without taking into account how this affects the city and the citizens.”

City elections are in April.