Cuyahoga County: Sheriff resigns at FitzGerald's request

7:20 PM, Jan 3, 2013   |    comments
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CUYAHOGA COUNTY -- Wednesday Cuyahoga County Sheriff Bob Reid swore in a batch of new deputies to bolster his department in the New Year.

But someone else will be leading them.

Thursday morning, Reid sent sheriff's department staffers a memo. It read:

"County Executive Ed FitzGerald has asked for my resignation the end of January 2013. It has been my honor to lead this organization for the past 3 1/2 years. I believe I'll leave this organization much better than when I first took office and will value the friendships I've made...Thank you for your dedication and keep up the fine work."

Reid, 61, the former Bedford police chief and city manager, succeeded interim Sheriff Frank Bova who took over for now-convicted former Sheriff Gerald T. McFaul.

Reached just after noon, Reid told WKYC that "it's more like a forced resignation."

Reid said he and FitzGerald had a face-to-face meeting Wednesday morning. When asked why he was being forced to resign, Reid said he asked FitzGerald that same question and "I didn't get a solid answer for that."

"It was somewhat of a surprise. It has been a little bit of a rocky road but I thought the last year went pretty well," Reid added.

When asked about Bova taking over, Reid said, "He'll do fine. He did well for the 45 days when he was first sheriff."

Later Thursday, Reid said that, basically, "I was fired...I was told they were going in a different direction. I was blindsided."

Reid said he was fired right after the new deputies were sworn in. He said he and FitGerald had their differences but he thought they had worked through them

FitzGerald released a statement mid-afternoon Thursday.

It read: "The County is at the mid-point in my administration and we are taking the time to review all of our leadership across all departments. After two years of work, it provides an opportunity for members of the leadership team and our administration to see where things stand and to make decisions in order to make our government work effectively as possible."

"The halfway point of the administration often results in personnel changes -- Clerk of Courts Gerald Fuerst decided to announce his retirement from public service last week, and other potential leadership changes may be announced in the near future."

"Sheriff Bob Reid announced his resignation today, and we respect and recognize his long commitment to public service in Cuyahoga County. Frank Bova, a longtime leader in public safety and former Interim Sheriff of Cuyahoga County, will serve as Interim Sheriff while a selection process for the new Sheriff is completed."

We will have more on this story tonight on Channel 3 News.


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