That's after the the state agency that issues and revokes police certification took "no action" on a case against Evans, launched by Mayor Chuck Shaheen last August.
Evans said he came to work Monday, "relieved." He said, "POST has a made a determination. No action will be taken on my certification."
A certified letter arrived at his home over the weekend from the Georgia Peace Officer Standards and Training council. It said after months of interviews, reviewing documents and a vote last week, the agency determined allegations against Evans, made by Shaheen, did not merit action against his police certification.
Mayor Chuck Shaheen did not respond to a request for an on-camera interview. Monday afternoon, he sent a fax saying, "The Peace Officer Standards and Training Council has not officially notified me of their decision regarding Chief Evans. However, I am supportive of the Police Department, and highly respect all of our officers. I will continue to move the City of Warner Robins forward no matter what the outcome may be."POST Executive Director Ken Vance confirmed the decision, but said he could not comment on the case for 10 calendar days after the decision. POST council voted on a recommendation for the case last Wednesday.
Their review included a look at a city policy violation, in which Shaheen suspended Evans, for showing support for a candidate during the prior year's election.
Evans says he's not sure why Shaheen referred his suspension for a city policy violation to POST. According to POST guidelines, reporting of a suspension is only required for suspensions 30 days for more. Evans' was originally seven. Then, council reduced the number of days to two.
Evans said, "The story is not what my opinion is. The story is not what I felt should've happened. The story is, here are the facts."
He says the facts show he did not "fix tickets", "hold evidence without charges " or commit other violations Shaheen asked POST to investigate. He also asked them to review a GBI report from 2009 and "grand jury concerns."
Last year, the GBI and former District Attorney Kelly Burke found no evidence of criminal wrongdoing, in relation to an alleged break-in of the former mayor's office.
No indictment regarding Evans was ever presented to a grand jury. However, then district attorney Jason Ashford, said Shaheen tried to make an appearance at their meeting, without Ashford's knowledge. Ashford called that "unprecedented" and canceled the meeting.
Evans says he's not sure why the conflict with Shaheen started, more than a year ago. "He has not shared with me what his entire problem with me is. For me to speculate, probably would not be appropriate," Evans said.
The police chief says he hopes the POST decision resolves any remaining issues with Shaheen. Evans said, "From the onset, I've made it completely known, that I will work for this mayor and any other mayor that sits in that office, because that's the way it's supposed to be."
He says the investigations havecreated uncertainty and stress among his officers and at home. Evans said, "I try to separate my work from my private life.Of course, some of it's spilled over."
Evans says he's committed to getting back to police business, and "that's exactly what I am going to do."Evansreleased this statement: March 14, 2011
On March 9, 2011, the Peace Officer Standards and Training Council of Georgia met and officially confirmed on what I, and many others, already believed. No action would be taken against me for several allegations that lacked any credibility. I was informed of the Council's official decision by mail several days later.
Now that the POST investigation has been finalized, I want to thank everyone, including city council members, for their support and prayers. Since the death of Mayor Walker the lives of my family have been impacted greatly. After losing a man who was like a father to me, we also lost my wife's father and suffered a loss through miscarriage last May. 2010 was a year of emotional loss and spiritual growth for myself and my family. Professionally, I have been subjected to a battery of investigations designed to damage not just my reputation but my career as a police officer. I have now been cleared of any wrongdoing by two district attorneys, two grand juries, the GBI, a private investigator and POST has determined no action will be taken concerning my certification.
To me, even more detrimental is the damage caused to the City of Warner Robins in general and the Police Department in particular. There were 15 years of exponential growth within the City of Warner Robins that have been matched by few municipalities, especially ones of our size. The Warner Robins Police Department grew and became a leader in the State of Georgia in various ways. Sadly, the last 15 months have been difficult and have caused a great deal of negative publicity and unwanted attention to our City and Police Department
With the investigations over, it is my desire to return to the sworn pledge I made in December 2003 to lead the WRPD to the best of my ability and to serve the city of Warner Robins faithfully as I have for 24 years. I want to thank the men and women of the WRPD who have continued to serve and protect our citizens and support the agency throughout this stressful time. I also want to express my gratitude to Georgia P.O.S.T. for their fair, thorough, and objective investigation into the allegations made against me.
It is my desire that the city government strive to work together for the future of Warner Robins. I extend an invitation to Mayor and Council to put this behind us and begin to focus on the issues ahead for the benefit of our citizens.
Brett L. Evans