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Rice U. Police Chief Resigns Amid Officer Termination Scandal

July 27, 2011  | 

Rice University Police Chief Bill Taylor and Major Dianna Marshall have resigned after they fired an officer who left campus to assist two Houston police officers involved in a shootout.

Officer David Sedmark was fired by Taylor and Marshall for leaving his assigned patrol area to respond to an officer down call a Greyhound bus station three miles from campus, the Galveston Crime Examiner reports. Since his firing, the university was denounced by local and statewide law enforcement organizations, as well as students.

Taylor will stay on the university payroll in a civilian capacity, and Marshall said she has plans to go back to college so she can one day be a police chief.

Source: Galveston Crime Examiner

Related: Texas Officers Support Rice U. Cop Fired for Responding to Officer Down Call (video)

Comments (8)

Displaying 1 - 8 of 8

Mark @ 7/28/2011 5:58 PM

unbelievable!!! Glad to hear they resigned!!! I could only imagine if the major or the chief were calling for help in a life/death situation they would want any LEO to respond. To fire him for doing, "the right thing" truly shows how far removed they are from Patrol as they sit in the ivory tower of a private university. Shame on you Dianna Marshall and Bill Taylor. When I read she was going back to school to be a Chief, I threw up a little in my mouth. Why doesn't she work patrol and bond with the front-line before she makes rash decisions with no insight as to the every increasing difficulty officers are confronted with on a daily basis. It's obviously all about her as she states, "I want to go back to school to be a Chief". Lord help that department!!!!

Chris @ 7/28/2011 6:14 PM

These two a true piece of work. Why did you resign? You may want to work on creating CORE Values. I suggest accountability since it is obvious you made the wrong decision with firing an officer for driving 2 minutes away trying to render aid to a fellow officer. Instead her comment reflects her and how she wants to be a Chief. Typical 'Bean Counter' focused on budget, politics, and policy. Remember Dianna, if you were being shot on campus, I would not fire any officer in my command while they responded to assist you or your officers. Better yet, if there was an 'Active Shooter' on a campus you commanded, why don't you handle it yourself and don't look to Municipal or Sheriff's agency. Instead of going back to school, why don't you work Graveyard Patrol on a weekend for a change?

Tom @ 7/28/2011 7:17 PM

This case made a lot of cops very angry. Officer survival and officers watching each other's back is a first priority. Firing or disciplining the officer for responding to an officer down call was inexcusable. Good riddance to these two morons who have demonstrated their total lack of common sense.

Charles @ 7/29/2011 1:16 AM

Epic fail. This kind of bureaucratic mentality is why line officers lose respect for their commanding officers. Taylor doesn't deserve to retain any position with the university after such a grievous lapse in judgment. As one poster noted, if there were an Active Shooter situation on campus, the Chief would expect cover officers from other agencies to arrive on campus. Why does he think his officers shouldn't provide cover to their fellow officers from other agencies when they need help? Marshall is dreaming if she thinks any agency will hire her as Chief, college education or not. College doesn't qualify someone to be a Chief. Time working patrol, supervising officers working patrol, running investigation and other special units, and demonstrating respect for one's officers and the relationship that they enjoy with the public does. Having been involved in screening candidates for Chief in my city, I cannot imagine any POA supporting her candidacy after what happened at Rice.

JJ Golliday @ 7/29/2011 7:49 AM

Good riddance to two IDIOTS. After 30 years as a Texas Peace Officer, I can never get over the mentality of some administrators. I hope the fired officer has already found a much better department to work for. JJG

christopher dancel @ 7/29/2011 9:06 AM

It's great to see other agencies and the public voice their opinion pertaining to an officer doing the right thing, but what actually happened to the officer that was terminated? Was he rehired or offered employment at the agency he backed?

An update would be appreciated.

Deadman @ 7/29/2011 2:53 PM

In todays world of political correctness,it is much easier to deny everything,(i didn't hear anything)(i didn't see anything)(i was out of the country at the time).All too often the new chiefs and brass are political appointees,(suits from the F.B.I.)(college graduates that don't know anything about the street,let alone real police work)(people who get an "A"for shuffling paperwork and just need a place to park their keester until retirement) or a (quota filler,yeah that still happens,you're lucky if they actually have some smarts),i had all of the above and survived 31 years.You need officers who know how to C.Y.A.,how to articulate a scenario on paper or on the radio.I was actually sent to scenes to assist officers on how to state what happened and i was not afraid to put on my incident reports a complete lack of effort to assist by supervisor or just plain getting in their face.It helps if you know more about the laws,ordinances,rules,and operating procedures than they do.You always run across peter principal candidates wherever you go.

Dave M @ 8/7/2011 4:38 PM

She really needs to attend a leadership course. Prior to this incident, none of the officers truly respected her. I actually don't blame her that much since she lacks so much leadership ability and promoted too fast, always focusing on her career. Making knee jerk decisions and acting on emotion is typical. Failing to connect with the ever changing dynamics of law enforcement and inability to adapt to current trends has Rice University and their police department, "behind the ball". Dianna may want to attend the FBI National Academy or take some leadership courses instead of, "going back to school to BE A CHIEF". This statement itself shows her lack of leadership and her selfish gratification to command a department.

Dianna, you will struggle, you will not prosper and your career as a Chief will be cut short if you continue to focus on your career and not focus on the community (college) and your 'Rank and File'. Remember, leadership is elusive and if you don't always look to perfect it, you will never gain an edge.

Good luck going back to school.

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