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SEA ISLE CITY –– Officials here have decided to take Prosecutor Robert Taylor’s advice and place the police chief on administrative leave while he remains under investigation.

An incident involving Chief William Kennedy came to light Oct. 24 when his wife Phyllis filed a restraining order in Superior Court against him under the Prevention of Domestic Violence Act. At that time the chief was placed on desk duty and was compelled to surrender his weapons.

Mrs. Kennedy allegedly became aware of a relationship between the chief and a female employee in the city’s public safety department through messages found on his city-issued cell phone.

City Council held a closed session meeting Oct. 25 to discuss possible litigation with Chief Kennedy. City Solicitor Paul Baldini pointed to Herald Spout Offs that told of pornographic cell phone images and illicit messages detailing the chief’s situation as a reason for the litigation.

Upon hearing of the situation, the city immediately informed the Prosecutor’s Office and Taylor suggested the leave of absence.

On Monday, the city announced that Chief Kennedy would be placed on paid administrative leave and scheduled another closed session council meeting to discuss the move. The meeting will be held tomorrow in the Public Safety Building on JFK Boulevard at 9 a.m.

The Prosecutor’s Office is investigating if the chief broke any laws relating to the incident.

“The city will fully and completely cooperate with that investigation,” Baldini said in a press release.

The city also retained an independent investigator to determine whether Kennedy broke any city policies or procedures.

Officials met yesterday to work out who would run the police department in Kennedy’s absence. Check the Herald Web site for continuing updates on this story.

Contact Hart at (609) 886-8600 Ext 35 or at: jhart@cmcherald.com

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