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State Police Superintendent Tells Lawmakers Investigations, Changes Continue

Man with a crew cut and glasses at a podium
Col. Jack Chambers addresses Joint Committee on Finance
Perry Bennett/WV Legislative Photography

Speaking to the Joint Standing Committee on Finance Monday, Interim State Police Superintendent Col. Jack Chambers said since he returned to the department after an earlier 26-year stint with the West Virginia State Police, he’s worked diligently to get numerous issues, including financial, clarified and cleaned up. 

“I’m not gonna be able to do it overnight,” Chambers said. “I’m working with the help of the department. There are a lot of good people down there. Got a few we probably don’t need, but for the most part, we have a great department.”

He said investigations into hidden cameras, theft, rape, destruction of evidence and invasions of privacy are moving toward resolution.

Chambers told Finance Committee members that there were some questions on the sign off of time sheets and other clerical issues. He said after five days on the job he sent a directive out.

“There’s monitoring and steps of verification now to check off everybody’s timesheet,” Chambers said. “The West Virginia State Police is moving towards (using the automated payroll system) Kronos.”

Committee member Sen. Eric Tarr, R-Putnam, asked Chambers about the investigation into possible misuse of specified vehicle purchase and maintenance funds.  

Chambers said the WVSP is fully complying with information requests from the Auditor’s Office. He said before his arrival, there may have been vehicle funds rerouted outside guidelines. 

“Probably we used some of this money that was allowed for use and it wasn’t for vehicles, but for something else, because another fund was short,” Chambers said. “Do I think you’d have a bunch of money that people were going on vacations and things like that? Absolutely not.”

He pledged to follow all stipulations, policies, and guidelines for the tenure of his leadership.

“If we were outside those guidelines, then shame on us,” Chambers said. “I promise, if I’m there one year, two years, or six years or 12 years, I’m not gonna go outside the guidelines. I’ll just do without. It’s as simple as that.”