Feds investigate Colwyn public safety director

May 9, 2013 8:31:49 PM PDT
A 4-3 vote along partisan lines Thursday night by the Colwyn Borough Council kept the job of Public Safety Director intact, but the woman holding that position remains the focus of an investigation ordered by Philadelphia Police Commissioner Charles Ramsey.

The vote, during a raucous meeting, came only hours after investigators from the Delaware County District Attorney's Office and Philadelphia Police Internal Affairs raided the offices of Colwyn Borough Hall and the Colwyn Police Station.

Numerous computers and files were carried out.

The raid, Action News is told, focused on the controversial hiring of former Philadelphia police officer and current Colywn public safety director Rochelle Bilal.

Commissioner Ramsey ordered Internal Affairs to determine if Bilal was moonlighting for Colwyn while still with the police force, something not allowed by regulations.

"Could I tell you what it is? I don't know. I have a lawyer. If there's anything in reference to me, I have a lawyer. I have not done anything illegal. I have been a Philadelphia police officer for 27 years. I have done my job," Bilal told Action News.

As to why Ramsey ordered the investigation, Bilal said, "The commissioner can order any investigation."

In Colwyn, Bilal has oversight of the police department.

That responsibility used to rest with the mayor, who says he doesn't know how Bilal was hired.

"All I know, from everybody's recollection, it was never voted on," Mayor Daniel Rutland said.

The Republican mayor and Republican council members argued at the meeting why they need a public safety director when they are paying a police chief $65,000 a year to sit at home.

"Going on four years. He's still being paid," Mayor Rutland told Action News earlier in the day.

Rochelle Bilal says this is all politics.

"Ramsey ordered an investigation and he can do that, but what they did today that caused all of you media to come is a witch hunt," Bilal said.

The FBI is now involved in this case, meaning this matter seems to be far from over.

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