GALION, Ohio (WCMH) – Galion fired its police chief Monday after finding him guilty of sexual misconduct.
Marc Rodriguez, who was placed on administrative leave in August, was found in violation of seven counts of the city’s code for engaging in offensive behavior toward female employees on Dec. 9, according to Galion city spokesperson Matt Echelberry.
Hired in May 2021, Rodriguez held the post for less than two years.
At a wedding for a city employee in March 2021, Rodriguez was reportedly witnessed inappropriately touching a woman on the leg “as she was shifting her body away” from him, his order of removal letter reads.
That same year, he was accused of making lewd comments to a female employee helping him learn a software program upon his promotion to chief. When told details of the incident, he said to investigators, “I don’t remember saying that,” according to the city.
Rodriguez twice reportedly followed a female employee to her residence in his vehicle, the city found.
While one woman was leaving the Elk’s Lodge, he rolled down his window to say he was waiting for her. Rodriguez followed her in his work car as she proceeded to leave, calling and texting her shortly after to ask her whereabouts for an upcoming meeting.
During a second incident, Rodriguez followed a woman to her personal residence in his vehicle, telling investigators that he encountered her in traffic.
Rodriguez asked a female employee to show him personal photos of herself in the fall of 2021, pressing her to send them even after she said they “were not for work.” He told investigators he was unaware the photos were “personal/revealing” when he asked to see them.
The city also found he sent an inappropriate text message to a subordinate in January 2022.
Previously a lieutenant with the department, Rodriguez assumed the position when former Chief Brian Saterfield retired in May 2021. He oversaw about 25 employees as chief, according to the city’s website.