CHATHAM — Chatham Police Chief Peter Volkmann has been placed on 30-day paid administrative leave by the Village Board, Mayor John Howe said Saturday.
The village was served with a warrant by state police Thursday seeking computer records from its police department, Howe said, adding investigators seized only computers from the village police department.
The investigation is being conducted by state police, the state Comptroller’s Office and the Columbia County District Attorney’s office, Howe said.
The board put Volkmann on leave during an emergency executive meeting Friday.
“Volkmann’s temporary paid leave is an administrative action, while the investigation is taking place, and should not be perceived as a disciplinary action”, Howe said.
The board will revisit Volkmann’s administrative leave in 30 days, if necessary, Howe said.
Volkmann is known for the police department’s Chatham Cares 4U program, which connects and transports, when necessary, substance abuse addicts to treatment centers. He is also credited with the village’s Your Cop program, which is a hands-on neighborhood policing effort to ensure police officers are connected to assigned neighborhoods.
Hudson Mayor Kamal Johnson appointed Volkmann in December as the city’s police commissioner. Johnson could not be immediately reached for comment.
Volkmann joined U.S. Rep. Antonio Delgado, D-19, on Feb. 4 at President Donald Trump’s third State of the Union Address.
On Jan. 8, 2019, state police, the state Department of Taxation and Finance and the state Comptroller’s Office executed a search warrant issued by Columbia County Court. Investigators seized a large volume of paper records and computers. The investigation was into possible irregularities with village finances.