SPAVINAW — A Mayes County police chief accused of molesting two teenage girls has been put on paid administrative leave, said Spavinaw Mayor Jim Winn on Friday.
Spavinaw Police Chief Clarence Gregory Sr., 75, is charged in Mayes County District Court with two counts of lewd molestation. He is accused of inappropriately touching two girls over a seven-year period, according to a probable cause affidavit.
“This is such a shock,” Winn said, referring to Gregory’s legal troubles.
Gregory told investigators he “was trying to instruct them on what to not let boys do to them,” according to court records. He was released Friday on $100,000 bail, records show.
A telephone message left for Dale Ellis, Gregory’s attorney, was not immediately returned.
Gregory has been employed with the city for almost two years, city officials said.
A church Sunday School teacher, former Spavinaw coach and school board member, Gregory has had no complaints lodged against him, Winn said.
“He has taken my children to church with him,” said Michelle Moore, of Spavinaw. “He will never take them again.”
Moore said her children never had any problems with Gregory, but she cannot take any chances with the safety of her children, she said.
One female Spavinaw resident who asked not to be identified said several women in their 50s expressed to her how uncomfortable they felt around Gregory when he stopped them during traffic stops.
Two Spavinaw police officers, along with Mayes County sheriff’s deputies, will be patrolling the community of 410 residents, Winn said.
City officials called a special meeting for Friday to discuss the police department, but later canceled the meeting on the advice of the town’s attorney, he said.
Winn said a meeting is expected to be called next week.
Gregory appeared in court on Friday and was released from jail on bond on the condition that he not have any contact with the girls or their families, court records show.
He is to return to court on Aug. 14.
CORRECTION: Dale Ellis is the attorney of record for Spavinaw Police Chief Clarence Gregory Sr. This story previously listed an incorrect attorney. (This story has been corrected.)