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Wednesday, February 11, 2009

County Plans Examiner Keith Coco Resigns

Investigation of Credentials by Jackson County Times, Based on Tip From Reader Leads To Resignation
By Sid Riley

Last week one of our subscribers brought some revealing information into our offices and presented them to Sid Riley, Managing Director of the Jackson County Times. This information had purportedly been anonymously left on this reader’s doorstep a few days earlier. This information concerned Jackson County Plans Examiner, Keith Coco.
We were aware of numerous complaints and disagreements which have transpired between various citizens and business owners over alleged impolite, inflexible incidents related to code enforcement decisions he made during construction projects. We had been informed by citizens of formal complaints given to County officials by citizens against Mr. Coco because of the manner in which he performed his duties. However, being a code enforcer is understandably a job which creates opportunities for disagreement.
These new documents which were given to our paper included printed pages from a blog web site where numerous negative comments about Mr. Coco had been posted, a letter stating that County Plans Examiner, Keith Coco had misrepresented his participation in the 9-11 rescue efforts as a New York Police Officer, and had also falsified his educational credentials on his application with the county by claiming to have a Masters Degree in Civil Engineering from Columbia University.
This author went to the web site as requested, entered the name "Keith Coco" and found a long listing of complaints of misconduct which were apparently entered by women over a period of several years. It should be noted that these were only blog entries with no validated proof or verifications. Anyone could go to this site and enter fictitious complaints against anyone. However, the presence of this data did encourage continuation of the investigation.
Within these blog entries were statements about Mr. Coco having misrepresented himself as having been a participating NY Police Officer on 9-11 when he had been released from the force on disability in the 1980’s. Later we discovered that this misrepresentation had already been disclosed to county officials, and Mr. Coco had apologized for the action.
We next contacted the Alumni Association for Columbia College in New York, and executed an inquiry about Mr. Coco’s academic credentials. We were informed they had no record of him being a graduate of their school. Again, the information which our reader had delivered appeared to be true and accurate.
Sid Riley then delivered this information to County Manager, Ted Lakey for additional consideration. Mr. Lakey gave assurance that the information would be fully investigated to determine if Mr. Coco had falsified his application for employment with the County.
After this Tuesday’s County Commission meeting, Sid Riley questioned Mr. Lakey about the progress of this investigation. Mr. Lakey then informed us that Mr. Coco had rendered his resignation to the County, and the resignation had been accepted, effective March 25. Mr. Lakey stated that it was County policy to neither publically discuss nor disclose Human Resources information, and he had no further comment on the matter.

1 comment:

  1. A man who lies to himself, and believes his own lies, becomes unable to recognize truth, either in himself or in anyone else, and he ends up losing respect for himself and for others. When he has no respect for anyone, he can no longer love, and in him, he yields to his impulses, indulges in the lowest form of pleasure, and behaves in the end like an animal in satisfying his vices. And it all comes from lying-to others and to yourself.
    -Fyodor Dostoevsky (1821-1881)