Mayor says police chief fired, council says oh no she's not

Crowd gathered Tuesday outside Latta Town Hall

Latta Police Chief Crystal Moore has been relieved of her duties Tuesday after more than 20 years of service, according to Latta Mayor Earl Bullard.

He said he can't go into the reasons why Moore was terminated because it's a personnel matter.

Tensions between Moore and Bullard had been growing in recent months.

Tuesday, dozens of residents gathered outside the Latta Town Hall in support of Moore and are outraged over her firing.

They've planned a rally Thursday at the town Gazebo on Main Street in support of efforts to get Moore back her job.

Latta Councilman Jared Taylor said Bullard fired Moore because she refused to sign a letter of reprimand. He said Moore wanted to talk with her attorney before she signed the paperwork.

Taylor added the mayor can fire the police chief, but it has to be approved by council, according to their town ordinance.

He said council is not considering Moore to be fired.

Taylor added council will vote on reinstating Moore as police chief Thursday at their council meeting.

In the meantime, Bullard said he's named Derrick Cartwright as the Interim Latta Police Chief.