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Purcellville interim town manager fires town’s Chief of Police Cynthia McAlister

Purcellville's Interim Town Manager Alex Vanegas has terminated the town's employment relationship with its Chief of Police Cynthia McAlister effectively immediately, the town announced in a statement today.

The town said its decision to terminate McAlister's employment relationship was the result of a "thorough investigation" after several department employees came forward with allegations that the chief had violated several town policies, procedures and Police Department General Orders.

Lieutenant Joseph Schroeck has been appointed the acting chief of police.

The decision comes after the Purcellville Town Council on Wednesday night voted unanimously “no confidence” in McAlister.

Town officials say seven Purcellville police officers have filed formal complaints against McAlister, and investigators have determined that "several town policies, procedures, and Police Department General Orders were violated."

An outside attorney hired by the town, Patrice Clair, and a human resources consultant, Georgia Nuckolls, assisted in reviewing the allegations.

McAlister was hired in 2015 and has been on leave for the past two months. She came to Purcellville after retiring from the Fairfax County Police Department. She has 35 years of police experience working in various fields of police operations and is the first woman to serve as chief of police in Purcellville.

Mayor Fraser said the town plans to institute an Office of Police Accountability to provide for civilian oversight of the complaint process and full access to the police department.

Once enacted, the committee will include town personnel, local residents and members of the business community. Town management plans to have an officer assigned to each section of town to help build relationships and “strengthen the bond between the police department and the citizens they serve.”


I see a lot of bomb throwing and no evidence to back any of it up. Representing the Mambo you have called the HR specialist a “convicted felon” that’s a big accusation, now where is your proof. Concernedbythis wants to make this a Republican v. Democrat thing and seems to be toting the former Chief’s water.

This can all be cleared up very easily. The town has released the 7 charges fought substantiated against Mrs. McAlister. We can except them or dispute them ,,, regardless all we have is our own personal beliefs based on little information and prejudices either for or against Mrs. McAlister.

The water is still muddy and all it will take to clear it up is for her, Mrs. McAlister, to sign a release form thereby releasing the full record of the investigation. Until that point, all this bomb throwing is nothing more than a bunch of hot air.

Good point by “Concernedbythis”. Who chose this particular HR consultant to head a sensitive investigation? She is a convicted felon out of NC and the only HR job she held in recent memory was at the Loudoun Tribune, managed by her friend, Bryan Reynalds (another convicted felon). That gig ended after approx. two months when the FBI executed search warrants of that business back in June. Read her prior posts and comments on Mike Chapman’s facebook, the Bull Elephant, etc., to get an idea of how unhinged she is. Also, why does she have Purcellville police officers listed as friends on her facebook account? How can you do a fair investigation when you are friendly with the complainants? Also interesting is that she is such an admirer of Mike chapman, who had it out for Chief McCallister for hiring a former Loudoun sergeant who was forced to resign because of child care issues.  Lots of questions, all fair.  I’m interested to see if this gets posted. Everything in this post is verifiable. 

Alexander Vanegas is about as disingenuous as they come!

Fraser was wrong to trust Lohr and wrong again to trust Vanegas. Fraser needs to completely clean house and start over. The stupid are leading the blind in Purcellville.

Time to fire Interim Town Manager, Alexander Vanegas for inappropriate conduct. He holds employees to a standard he does not adhere too.

What a travesty!  Chief McAlister’s only crime was an attempt to instill professionalism and accountability at the Police Department.  Instead of championing professionalism, the Town instead chooses to condone bad behavior.  Further, they seek to functionally eliminate the position of chief and instead run the agency by “Town management”.  The end result will the the institutionalization of disfunction at the department and the elimination of any hope of moving the agency forward.  By the way Lawman, no worries on Vanessa Grigsby becoming chief in Purcellville.  She’s too smart to become involved in that chaos.  In fact, the Town has just destroyed the possibility to attract any fully qualified candidate for the position,. 

On a side note, one has to wonder how Republican hack and Mike Chapman acolyte Georgia Nuckolls became.involved in the investigation.  The Town should provide full disclosure on the process by which both consultants were chosen and how a fair and impartial investigation was guaranteed.

The Mayor is a liar, he does not want transparency.  He was not honest when the town manager was fired - does anyone see a pattern of deceit here?

Lawman, the Mayor is black, clearly the majority of the good people living in Purcellville are not racists. maybe then, but not now. I guess no issue in modern democrat politics can escape having an “ism” interjected.

I’ll lay odds that the 7 who complained were old white male officers.  Purcellville will now be responsible for a paying when they lose the EEO suit filed by McA.

The police chief does it and she gets fired. The sheriff does the same crap and it’s ok? Time for Loudoun county to get a police department.  I bet if a survey was done it would also show a vote of no confidence in mike chapman

Mayor Fraser stated in the meeting last night that he wished to conduct a transparent government and to be accountable and back the police officers of the town. Can this newspaper ask the questions the “citizens” of the town want to know? What is the real story behind the hard and dedicated individuals to INCLUDE Chief McAlister being forced out.  There is no coincidence in the amount of people that are no longer with this town government.  I have NO CONFIDENCE in the Mayor or the Town Council or the Interim Town Manager and now I am concerned about the “7” police officers that complained.

Won’t be something if former resident Vanessa Grigsby, currently the number two person in the Leesburg Police became the Chief in Purcellville.  The irony would be that all these years later she would be serving as Police Chief in a town where her tennis team was banned form practicing at the Country Club because she was the sole Black member.  Imagine those racist now having to see her as the Town’s Police Chief.

Oh, I am sure that we will see more in Loudoun Circuit Court in the terms of wrongful termination.  As Police Chief, would that erson have responsibility establishing police department general orders?  one would thnk…

Is it possible to have more details concerning, “several town policies, procedures, and Police Department General Orders were violated”? This is very vague.

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