VA police chief resigns following racial discrimination complaints

INDIANAPOLIS – Amid racial discrimination complaints, the VA police chief resigned from his position Friday.

Allen Poythress, a U.S. Army military police sergeant, said VA Police Chief Brian Fogg made racially insensitive remarks to him. At the time, Poythress was the only African-American police officer at the facility.

“He referred to me as a token black guy. Every time I’d eat lunch in the cafeteria, he’d make racially charged jokes like 'make sure I don’t eat up all the fried chicken' or he’d refer to watermelon or Kool-Aid as my favorite fruit or beverage that I would like to consume," said Poythress.

Poythress said he was fired from Roudebush VA Medical Center in Indy after he complained Fogg used racial slurs on the job. VA officials said Poythress was let go because of failing to disclose information on his job application.

Call 6 Investigators learned in November Poythress could keep his job for at least a year if he signed an agreement dropping his complaint.

David Holway, president of the National Association of Government Employees said the VA tried to bribe Poythress to keep his job and requested Fogg resign in early May.

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“That is a bribe,” said Holway. “It's the worst form of bullying. They tried to bully him to take out his EEOC complaint to save his job. Historically, VA hospitals have been run like plantations. The directors of these hospitals think they own the hospital."

Call 6 Investigators reached out to Fogg, but have not received a response.

The VA confirmed Fogg’s resignation and released the following statement:

 

We respect the privacy of our staff and their decision on employment. We will continue to recruit and offer positions within our facility to include police force to the best qualified candidates. 

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