Auburn police chief charged with harassment

Chris Cooper Managing Editor

March 27, 2014

Auburn Police Chief Ron Mills was recently issued a summons to appear in court April 16th by District Judge Sue Carol Browning on a criminal harassment complaint by his neighbor Jon-Ray Smith. At this stage the complaint is not against Mills in his official capacity as a police officer.

Attorney General Jack Conway designated Harold M. Johns of Todd County as special prosecutor regarding the complaint, which was initially made to Logan County Attorney Joe Ross. Because of Ross’ professional relationship with Mills as a police officer, he could not pursue the complaint due to conflict of interest.

“We are very early in the case,” said Johns. “My goal is to make sure the neighborhood where the Smiths and the Mills reside is peaceful and safe. It’s a simple goal and I’ll do my best to get there. I just want people to be safe an secure in their homes.”

According to Johns, allegations were made in the criminal complaint saying that over an extended period of time Mills allegedly engaged in a course of conduct that serves no legitimate purpose and serves to harass, annoy or alarm the Smith family.

“Overall the is a relatively minor crime, but as we all know, when there are issues involving neighbors the aggravation is magnified,” said Johns. “Hopefully we can deal with this problem where everyone can enjoy that most basic right that when we are home we are not bothered.”

Smith claims there have been problems with his neighbor Mills for two years.

“He drives way too fast on the road in front of my house where my child plays. I have asked him to slow down and that hasn’t worked,” said Smith, who also claims Mills drives on his property, has passed him on the right hand side of the road, and has run over property poles he had put in.

Johns said he chose to file the complaint as a criminal violation after reviewing the case. He further stated that his determination was made on the circumstances presented to him and was in his opinion appropriate.

Auburn Mayor Mike Hughes said he had just been made aware of the complaint and was currently investigating the situation.

“The city will have an official response after we gather the facts,” said Hughes.

Chief Mills has been advised by his attorney to not make any comments at this time.