Selma City Council reinstates Police Chief Kenta Fulford

Published 8:09 am Tuesday, June 25, 2024

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Selma Police Chief Kenta Fulford was reinstated Monday by the Selma City Council during a due process hearing that included a six-hour executive session. 

City Council President Billy Young made the motion to retain Fulford around 11:30 p.m.. Councilman Sam Randolph made the motion, seconded by Councilman Clay Carmichael. Young hit the gavel and Fulford returned after being placed on Administrative leave by Mayor James Perkins Jr. two months ago.

“I’m trying to settle back in, there’s a lot of work to be done,” Fulford said.

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Perkins disagreed with the council’s decision for an executive session and protested. Young said that Perkins had already spoken during the earlier part of the hearing and that was his chance to talk. Carmichael motioned for the executive session and was seconded by Councilman Troy Harvill.  

The narrow vote was 5-4 in favor of an executive session. Young, Carmichael, Harvill, Jannie Thomas, and Christie Thomas voted yes. Council members Michael Johnson, Atkin Jemison, Lesia James, and Randolph voted no.

As residents were leaving the Council Chambers, Perkins screamed to them, “You’re being railroaded.”

Young responded before the executive session began.

 “Whether the decision is popular or not, it is my responsibility to protect the citizens of Selma. Public Safety is a priority.”

Dallas County Sheriff’s Office Deputy J.T. Cole was serving as interim police chief, appointed by Perkins.