Bal Harbour police chief faces federal investigation
BAL HARBOUR. Fla. (WSVN) -- It appears to be the end for Thomas Hunker's reign as police chief of the Bal Harbour Police Department, according to his attorney.
Demolition crews are working Thursday to tear down any connection to a drug forfeiture program that has resulted in a federal investigation, and now, according to Hunker's attorney, his termination.
Detectives used to gather in a trailer to work out their operation to seize drug money. Now, it is being torn down.
The Justice Department alleges $7 million was generated by the Bal Harbour Police Department over several years. Officers would work outside the villages' small jurisdiction and team up with federal agencies to investigate drug dealers and seize cash. There have been allegations that millions of dollars were mismanaged.
Hunker, with years of experience, always denied the allegations. "People say this is all about the money," said Hunker back in November.
Interim Police Manager Jay Smith commented on the situation. "We are in the discussions with them to see about reaching an amicable solution to our situation," said Smith. "Right now, it looks like it will be termination without cause, and he will receive a 20-week severance package."
Hunker has been on administrative leave with pay since December.
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