WAYNE - A police officer is suing the City of Kenova Police Department after he claims it failed to pay him backpay when he assumed Chief of Police duties during his employment.

David Francis was employed by the defendant as captain and the highest ranking member of the KPD other than the Chief of Police prior to June 1, 2009, according to a complaint filed May 7 in Wayne Circuit Court

Francis claims from June 1, 2009, until Sept. 29, 2009, the Chief of Police took administrative sick leave and Francis assumed his duties until another Chief of Police was hired.

From June 2010 until July 19, 2010, Francis again assumed the Chief of Police duties, according to the suit.

Francis claims on Oct. 6, 2010, he filed a grievance with Kenova Police Civil Service Commission to request a hearing to determine whether or not he should have been paid for performing the duties of the Chief of Police during the times he did so and on March 20, 2012, a hearing was held and the KPCSC issued a decision on May 25, stating that Francis was entitled to the difference in pay between what a police captain and Chief of Police would have made.

The City of Kenova has failed to pay Francis the back wages owed to him, which violates West Virginia code, according to the suit.

Francis claims after the decision was made, his attorney contacted KPD's attorney on several occasions to resolve the matter, but Ryan Turner, the defendant's counsel, has stated he does not believe Francis is entitled to any further remuneration.

The defendant is liable to Francis for the amount of his regular pay for each day the employer was in default and liquidated damages of three times the amount of monies due, according to the suit.

Francis is seeking compensatory damages with pre- and post-judgment interest. He is being represented by Paula L. Harbour of Paula L. Harbour Esq. PLLC.

The case has been assigned to Circuit Judge James H. Young Jr.

Wayne Circuit Court case number: 13-C-075

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