Jefferson Co. employee says commissioner threatened him

April 06, 2007|by DAVE McMILLION

CHARLES TOWN, W.Va. - The director of maintenance for Jefferson County government told the Jefferson County Commission on Thursday that one of the commissioners acted in a threatening manner toward him earlier this week.

Bill Polk said the commissioner "got within inches" of his face and shook a finger at him while the two were talking about pay raises and other issues on Tuesday about 9 a.m.

Polk refused to identify the commissioner, but the Jefferson County Sheriff's Department released a report saying Polk told police that Jim Surkamp became "verbally aggressive" in a parking lot behind the sheriff's department on Washington Street.

Surkamp is one of five county commissioners.

Polk said Surkamp was yelling at him and using obscenities, according to the sheriff's department report.

Surkamp then calmed down and said he was sorry, according to the report.

Lt. Dave Colbert said Thursday that the sheriff's department had not charged anyone in the case.


Polk told the commissioners he was in fear of his well-being during the incident, and said he believes it is the responsibility of the commissioners to help create a safe and friendly environment for county employees.

There was little reaction from the commissioners, and Commission President Frances Morgan thanked Polk for his comments.

Surkamp would not comment in detail after the meeting, except to say that Polk's comments bordered on slander.

"It reeks of politics," Surkamp said.

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