MANATEE — A former Manatee County Sheriff’s Office deputy working as a bailiff lost an appeal to the Career Service Appeal Board last week, according to the Manatee County Sheriff’s Office.
Willie Barton was terminated May 21 for violating several general orders, including neglect of duty, insubordination and conduct unbecoming stemming from five incidents, according to internal affairs reports.
“I did make some bad choices as far as some of the decisions I made, however the department has not always done the right thing either. I think I should have been punished, but I don’t think what I did warranted being terminated,” said Barton. “Everything I was charged with was trivial ... . However, I was targeted after I reported a racial slur made by (a supervisor).”
A board of Barton’s peers chose to uphold the termination in a 5-to-0 vote Friday evening after a hearing that spanned over the course of two days, said Public Information Officer Dave Bristow.
Barton, who worked security in the historic courthouse, was accused of not attentively searching people as they entered the building, according to reports. Supervisors also had issues with the way Barton presented time he took off from work.