Midfield police lieutenant alleges race, sex discrimination in lawsuit against city

Local News

Lt. Donna Logan, a 15-year veteran of the city’s police department, is suing Midfield for alleged race and sex discrimination. (Photo courtesy of Midfield Police Department)

MIDFIELD, Ala. (WIAT) — A lieutenant with the Midfield Police Department has filed a lawsuit claiming the city has discriminated against her based on her sex and race.

In a lawsuit filed earlier this month, Lt. Donna Logan, a 15-year veteran of the Midfield Police Department, claimed the city violated the Civil Rights Act by discriminating against her after she complained that she “was having trouble with supervising the white police officers.”

Logan’s claims are outlined in the lawsuit and a related complaint filed with the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, which is tasked with enforcing federal discrimination laws.

In the EEOC complaint, Logan stated that officers “will go directly to Chief Jessie Bell (Black) and disregard my authority entirely.”

She also said her access to the department’s pay system has been revoked.

“The white sergeants under my authority have the code to access the pay system and were told not to give it to me,” the EEOC complaint said. “I have complained of the unfair treatment, but nothing has been done to correct it.”

In a notice signed Sept. 7, the EEOC said it would “not proceed further with its investigation,” but added the decision “does not mean the claims have no merit.” That notice informed Logan of her right to sue in relation to her claims within 90 days of receiving the EEOC’s letter.

In the federal lawsuit she filed earlier this month, Logan said her work environment changed once Jesse Bell was promoted to chief of police.

“Once Jesse Bell was promoted, I was not allowed to do my job,” the lawsuit claimed.

Logan’s suit alleges that in July 2020, a meeting was held with Midfield Mayor Gary Richardson, a city councilor and the police department about the issues.

“Everybody in the meeting was told that these practices would stop and to notify the mayor if they continued,” the suit stated.

Logan said she called the mayor the next week “because nothing changed.”

“The mayor stated that he was tied up, and he would call me back,” the suit claimed.

Logan said instead of getting a call back from the mayor, she was called into the office of the chief of police.

“I am now being retaliated [against] and my job duties are being changed,” Logan said in the suit.

When reached for comment, Logan told CBS 42 that she is currently on medical leave and would not comment on the suit at this time.

On Tuesday, Chief Bell said he had not yet received a copy of the suit and would not comment on the allegations made by Logan.

CBS 42 made several attempts to contact Richardson and City Attorney David Sullivan for comment but have not heard back as of Tuesday evening.

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