The former Slippery Rock University Chief of Police has been charged following an investigation by Pennsylvania State Police.
Michael Simmons is accused of stealing more than $23,000 from the department and is facing four felony counts: theft, theft by deception, access device fraud and receiving stolen property. Charges were filed Monday in the Butler County Magisterial District Court of William O’Donnell in Slippery Rock.
The charges stem from an independent investigation requested by the university and conducted by Trooper Todd Adamski of the Pennsylvania State Police Special Investigations Division following the discovery of several “irregularities” in budget funds within the police department, according to the school.
“While we are shocked that someone in this position of authority would exhibit such behavior, I want to assure everyone that at no time were Simmons’ actions any threat to the health, safety and wellbeing of the campus community,” SRU President William Behre said in a statement. “We have fully cooperated with the investigation and support the findings. At this point all further action regarding Simmons is in the hands of the criminal justice system.”
Simmons joined the university in January 2011. He was placed on administrative leave Feb. 13, 2019 after concerns about his performance emerged and then terminated Feb. 26, 2019 once irregularities were confirmed.
Simmons is expected to be arraigned later this month.
Prior to joining SRU, Simmons was the former director of safety and security at the Community College of Allegheny County. He had previously served as the police chief for the Titusville Police Department and was a detective with the Pittsburgh Bureau of Police within the Internal Affairs Department.
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