Irwin police chief on paid leave

Mayor says career is under review

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The Irwin police chief has been placed on paid administrative leave while the borough investigates "some situations in his career," according to Mayor Dan Rose.

Chief Joe Pocsatko was placed on medical leave after he injured his hand during a confrontation in October. Mr. Rose said Chief Pocsatko received a doctor's permission to return to work, but council opted to put him on administrative leave last month.

Mr. Rose said council has hired an investigator to look into "a number of incidents."

"The whole point is this: It's important what impact the chief of police makes on the borough ... if procedures aren't followed," he said.

"This is a very serious situation going on here," Mr. Rose said before apologizing for not being able to provide more information.

Officer Dan Wensel will serve as chief in his absence, Mr. Rose said. Supervising the police chief is one of the main powers of the mayor of a borough.

Chief Pocsatko, who has served on the force for more than a decade, could not be reached for comment. Neither could borough manager Mary Benko.

neigh_east - neigh_westmoreland

Annie Siebert: asiebert@post-gazette.com or 412-263-1613. Twitter: @AnnieSiebert.


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