IRWIN (KDKA) — Irwin Borough Council voted unanimously Thursday night to fire the police chief, but it’s unclear why the decision was made.

Joe Pocsatko has been an Irwin police officer for more than 15 years. For the last three years, he has served as chief.

Back in October, he was assaulted by a man inside the police station and had to go on medical leave because of a hand injury.

He was placed on administrative leave about a month ago.

Council members at Thursday night’s meeting said Pocsatko’s termination was not related to his injury, and no plans have been made to fill his position.

The department consists of two full-time and roughly 10 part-time officers.

Pocsatko sent KDKA a statement on Friday:
“I have already been in contact with the Fraternal Order of Police, and the law firm of Welby, Lightman and Stoltenberg to file the appropriate appeal through civil service. This unfair and unjust termination is a retaliatory result of me being forced to forward three complaints that I had against Mayor Rose due to his inappropriate and unprofessional conduct.”

The mayor’s office referred all questions to Irwin Solicitor Todd Turin who did not return KDKA’s call seeking comment.

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