Half of Nevada Cops are Quitting, City Leaders Refuse to Comment

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NEVADA, Iowa -- There has been a mass exodus at the Nevada Police Department with most of the force's officers quitting.  City leaders are refusing to talk about what they will do about it.

Cali Smith of Nevada got her wish. Last June, she called police twice when she says a man chased her into her home.  But she says police never showed up. Nevada Police Officer Hillary Cale says she checked out Smith's garage, didn't see anything, so she left without first talking to Smith. Smith complained that, by not checking on her, officer Cale put her life in jeopardy and she demanded that Officer Cale be fired. Now, we're told Officer Cale has resigned from the Nevada Police Department.  "I think because of the pressure that we put on her she knew that she was going to be under a magnifying glass and chose not to be," Smith said. "So that tickled me to death."

But Cale isn't alone. About half of the department's 10 officers are quitting. Police Chief Ricardo Martinez refused to answer our questions on camera, but confirms that Cale quit.  He wouldn't say why.  He also said at least three others will be going to other departments by the end of the month, and a couple more could leave next spring.

Smith didn't want that.   "No. Absolutely not," she says, "That's pretty scary to me. And it should be scary to Nevada. But unfortunately Nevada is hiding under a rock."

And that seems to be the case. We reached out to every city council member. Most refused to comment. The rest did not return our calls for comment. The mayor hung up on us. We went to City Administrator Elizabeth Hanson's office. Even though I could see her through the glass, we were told we would have to make an appointment to talk with her.  I called, and left a message, right in front of her, and she never called back.

Smith says with city leaders refusing to answer questions about the police department, and so many police officers jumping ship, she's scared. "You know, before when I made two 911 calls and nobody came," Smith says, "Well now they certainly won't come because there's nobody there to come. That's a pretty scary thought."

The city of Nevada did hire an outside agency to investigate Officer Cale's actions. During that investigation, Officer Cale testified she was wearing a body camera when she checked out Smith's home, but didn't turn it on. She also testified she was not disciplined. The outside agency determined that there was an inadequate response to Smith's call for help, but no further action was recommended.

53 comments

  • Rebecca Hergert

    I know this!!
    If you don’t do your job!! You should be out the door!!
    I should get Mick Bailey’s Pay-Check & my husband should get Branstad pay-check!!

    • anjali richards

      Since chanell13 did investigate on the Nevada. Police..thay should do more digging on the court system. .,,and the. Judges….and the way the armed police department dos things. …how meny people have bin wrongfully arrested’ or bin had there lives turned up side dowen for a pay check…or for them to make a quota….people. need to speek up…we. are the community and we should be heard. Not silenced. ..we make the change…..

      • Ava-Jo Holmes

        anjali,…..you have made some pretty good points, .there are too many police officers out there that do not do their jobs well….although, i do have to say, it did take awhile to decipher what you were saying…….having said that, you really need to learn how to spell. this is not just about “their”, “they’re, and “there”…this is is about totally not knowing how to communicate efficiently to the masses. use your spell-check…that is what it is for. also, brush up on your grammar. that, too, will help. there are also a lot of people out there that will be more than happy to assist you in this.

      • Scootiep

        I’d listen to AVA-JO HOLMES. She’s not insulting you in any way, only trying to help. Having better grammar and spelling gets people to consider your arguments more seriously when reading them. And while I may personally disagree with you on a number of points, you still have a right to your opinion and deserve to be heard. Grammar and spelling will help you achieve that goal.

  • Mickie

    Seriously…I could tell you why all of our cops are leaving, but I’m sure there is a word limit for this comment section.

  • Clyde

    Things that make you go hummmm: Usually city leaders ignore what their police officers do. Maybe this one doesn’t.

  • midwestman

    First off to Cali Smith ask and so shall you receive. Secondly kudos to the city administration for refusing to speak with Brilbeck. And Anjali I recommend hooked on phonics for you for a christmas gift.

  • Hugo S LaVia

    ex·o·dus noun \ˈek-sə-dəs, ˈeg-zə-\
    : a situation in which many people leave a place at the same time

    Might be the first time in human history that 5 constituted a “mass exodus” of anything.
    Make that 3.

    One quit, most likely to avoid some sort of punishment.
    Three have other jobs.
    Two more MIGHT quit — NEXT SPRING.

    Exaggerate much, WHO? Awful slow exodus, too.

    WHO — more like Fox every day …

    • Scootiep

      I agree with you in principle. But in this case, 5 officers constitutes literally half of the police force in Nevada. Ergo, the use of “mass exodus”, while a little over dramatizing, would still be technically correct.

  • jack

    If I were on patrol in Nevada I’d be excited to go some place else… especially w people like Smith. 3 times and no one came? How often do you call 911 lady.? Somethings a little off there. Cops put their lives in danger for lowlifes, liars, thieves, (just the same as responsible contributing members with common sense) and have a difficult time making an immediate decision on who’s full of it and who isn’t. They’re are people, not tools. After this hype I’d leave too if the opportunity presented itself. Good job Nevada.

    • Ava-Jo Holmes

      hey, jack….while i don’t know all of the particulars either, the officer that responded to her call admitted that she went into the garage and checked it out, but did not go in and make sure the lady was okay. that, by itself, is truly negligent.
      plus, according to the article, the lady made 2 calls, not 3….also, we don’t know what kind of neighborhood she lives in. so there may or may not be something to what you have said. point being, we don’t know all of the facts, and so we need to remain more objective until all (or more) of the facts come in. have a great day.

      • lo

        Sometimes people don’t want to meet with police. If she told dispatch she didn’t want to talk to police I wouldn’t knock either. I’ve had calls where someone said someone was walking in their back yard and I drove around and walked back there and was unable to locate. My partner walked with me but we didn’t make contact with the caller because they didn’t was to. Hard to know without hearing the 911 call

      • John

        doesn’t matter where she lives…. Supreme court ruled cops are not there to be body guards and can not be sued if you got a boo boo…

        Its your house so its your problem to secure it…

        plus she sounds like the type who calls evey day about kids walking by etc..

  • Bob

    Maybe KCCI should do some digging on Cali Smith as well. Her facebook page is non stop railing against the city of Nevada, including how she thinks you should be able to go armed into schools and city council meetings. Let’s consider the source and how looney tunes it might be folks.

      • Bob

        I live in town thank you, and no I’m not a “shill” for the police officers. The police have responded every time I have called, not necessarily with a result I agreed with, but they did come. I also find your poisoning the well attack on my hilarious considering you know nothing about me. Cali, on the other hand, has put her crazy out there for everyone to see with her wide open facebook account. I’m going to post this, then I’m going to see how far back she has been freaking out. I’m sure she has a long standing history of not getting along with anyone, and now she has media coverage YIPPEE!!!

    • Tom Howard

      You can carry a firearm here into a city council meeting, you can carry your firearm on you, as long as you don’t leave your vehicle, on to school property. (Different state FYI) Our kids are still alive, and so are our city council people. Just because you don’t agree with someone’s views doesn’t mean they are looney toons….

    • J.Mather

      Bob has it right. Police officers from smaller cities apply for jobs with other cities for many reasons. Nevada has known about these job applications for some time. There is nothing that Cali or her friend did that precipitated any of the police leaving. On the other hand, if WHO TV really wants to investigate something in Nevada, I would suggest an investigation of Cali and and her friend Rhonda Applegate. They are currently causing the city to expend money and manpower as part of an apparent vendetta they have against Nevada. If you ever hear bad things about Nevada I can almost guarantee these people had some hand in it. The rest of us like our town.

    • lo

      She seems obsessed with law enforcement period. Her job says she is self employed but in what… Calling and criticizing officers in their performance. Since when did she become an expert… Oh wait, forgot all these people with internet have all got their law degree now

  • Spitfire

    I think all of the police officers should quit their jobs as cops and let’s see how that works for whining public who seems to want to blame them for doing too much or too little. Gesh…..they can’t seem to do anything right for the public. Maybe they should come to our jobs and complain and yell at us about having something better to do than bothering you. Or perhaps yell at us about where our paychecks come from and how we pay taxes. America own it and stop blaming everyone else for your problems. It is getting tired. No wonder no other countries like us. We are a country of entitlement and give me give me. Nothing is ever good enough

  • josh

    People of neveda need to get over some issues they have with cops in town and stop getting mad because they gave you a ticket. Im tierd of hearing people complaning about them all the time if you dont want to get pulled over (or shot) dont break the law.

  • Tracy Toney

    This isn’t the 1st time they havent responded about a year ago a man in a black truck offered. My children candy and puppies at the church bus stop so I called the police it took 4 hours for them to call me back. And they never came questioned the kids and never made a report.As well recently my house was broken into while I was at work the police responded but not to investigate instead to ticket me for my dog being loose and even though the officer stated in court the window was broke out and he did nothing to check to see why the judge sided with the officer leaving me a single mom working a temporary job 30 days to pay $500 the best part is I still possess a note the man who broke in left on my table with his name and phone number the judge didn’t care also had 2 witnesses. To what the man did when we called and asked him why he broke in I’ve only had one good experience with the N.P.D. Matt Snyder was the responding officer other than that one time. I feel harrassed. And absolutely unprotected in this town. There have been several other instances I could write you a book on the misconduct of these police officers but it would make me be harrassed even more.They already do enough knowing I can’t afford an attorney or to move I’m scared to even write this but somebody needs to let the public know. What’s happening.Ild feel more protected just starting over with one officer Matt. Snyder. Who responded when I was beat up by someone this officer doesn’t care where you live he doesn’t let his badge go to his head he makes you feel comfortable as well as cared about in the. Most horrible of situations and when on his way home off work hears on the radio. The perpetrators in the area turns around goes gets his gear and comes takes the perpetrator down before anybody else even shows up.And that’s the way all officers should be.Instead of serve and protect a lot of people feel they practice harass and entrap.And it’s not all the officers but it’s not just Hilary either.Somebody needs to take a closer look into some of these reports.I know a mother who’s son gets followed by the police and searched every time he leaves her house because he’s on probation.You are no longer aloud to go for walks after dark without being interrogated.I know a father that sais they ran both of his kids out of town.It goes on and on.

  • Breanna

    It’s about time that Nevada police start filing out. I’d NEVER want to call them for any emergency because they do nothing to help! They let my grieving grandmother wait in there lobby for more then 4hrs before answering questions about my father’s death and instead of talking to her and our family they walked out the back door, never returned her calls just like they wouldn’t for the reporters and they blocked her emails. Weve been looking for answer for three years now and they just dont care and wont tell us anything because chances are they never even tried to solve the problem. They are all hiding and it’s time to boot them out and get some police officers in there who are willing to so the job and are willing to help people instead of being shady!

  • MommyJenna

    This whole situation is a 3 ring circus and while yes, it didn’t do the city officials any good by how they responded, there’s so much of this story that is pure sensationalism. Yes, Cali was wronged severely with Hilary Cale not responding to the 911 calls. I supported her in seeking action for that situation but since that time, she and her friend have turned this issue into a three ring circus. Cali fails to mention in said article they have been going after the police for records regarding minors, not caring that there are laws protecting minors privacy and the family has said no.
    I considered Cali a very close friend, I shared tears with her but, the things going on right now, it’s just embarassing as a whole. I hope she finds peace or whatever it is she’s looking for but I won’t be a part anymore.

    • John

      She was accused of not doing it but she was only found guilty of not turning her body cam on…. Most cars have gps so they can tell if she was there and seeing she wasn’t fired then they told her next time turn the cam on… sounds like she didn’t answer her door for a reason… too bad she cant sue

      as per a supreme court ruling this lady has no right to demand a cop be fired nor can she sue…

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