Digital First: Vicksburg fire chief to stay in position after controversial comments

Local News

VICKSBURG, Miss. (WJTV) – During the Vicksburg Mayor and Board of Alderman meeting on Monday, Mayor George Flaggs discussed concerns over Vicksburg Fire Chief Craig Danczyk’s recent comments on social media.

In a Facebook thread about the protests and riots going on in parts of the United States in the wake of the death of George Floyd, Dancyzk wrote, “I got 40 round magazines and (2) AR’s.” He also commented, “Protect your families from criminals.”

His comments were deleted from the post.

Some community members viewed the comments as insensitive, while others defended the fire chief saying many took his comments out of context.

The city released the following statement about the board’s decision to keep Dancyzk on the payroll.

Recently, it came to our attention that two City employees posted controversial content on social media regarding current events going on around the country. We are aware that these posts sparked emotional responses, with citizens of Vicksburg and others around the State weighing in on both sides of the issue. On the one hand, there were cries for the employees to be terminated, and, on the other hand, there were showings of support toward the employees.

In response to the controversy, the City sought the advice of outside legal counsel.  While neither post reflects the views of the Mayor or the Board of Aldermen, it ultimately was determined that no employment action against the employees would be taken. 

The City of Vicksburg respects the First Amendment rights of its citizens, including those employed by the City. Having said that, the City is committed to serving the needs of the community, and the actions and expressions of its employees should not take away from this purpose. The City is reviewing its social-media policy, and employees should take into account how their actions may impact their employment before posting online. Every situation is reviewed on its own merits.

City of Vicksburg

Mayor Flaggs will hold a news conference on Tuesday to discuss the board’s decision, as well as the ongoing situation with COVID-19.

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