CLEVELAND, Tenn. -- Rhodes Climate Controlled Storage, where Cleveland police Chief Wes Snyder and MainStreet Cleveland head Sharon Marr secretly rendezvoused in a climate-controlled unit, has denounced the couple's activity on its premises.
"It is against our policy here at Rhodes Storage for a tenant to physically occupy their unit," said Jimmy Rhodes, owner of the facility on Old Tasso Road NE, in a statement. "Our units are for the purpose of storing commercial and household items only."
When facility personnel found evidence that Marr and Snyder were occupying a storage unit during business hours, the business contacted authorities and cooperated with a police investigation, Rhodes said.
"We have a zero tolerance policy for this type of behavior in our facilities and strongly feel that appropriate action was taken," he said in the statement. "It is our number one priority to provide safe, clean, secured storage for our valued customers."
Facility surveillance tapes turned over to the Cleveland Police Department documented multiple visits to a unit by Snyder and Marr in late November and early December. A Dec. 4 police report noted that pillows, blankets and half a bottle of brandy were found inside.
Snyder submitted his retirement letter on Dec. 5. His retirement becomes effective on Jan. 5, his 10th anniversary as police chief.
He and Marr, executive director of the nonprofit MainStreet Cleveland, publicly apologized at Monday's Cleveland City Council meeting.
"I made a terrible mistake with a very dear and very good friend that plunged all of us into circumstances that are horrible to say the least," Snyder said at the meeting. "I take full responsibility and complete responsibility for my actions. Without a doubt I have used poor judgment in this matter. So I'll stand here today and ask you for your forgiveness ... healing starts with the first step, so here's the first step."
Snyder is taking vacation leave and will not return to the office before his retirement date, City Manager Janice Casteel said. She said Capt. David Bishop has been named as interim chief.
Bishop said he has served the Cleveland Police Department for more than 29 years and has 35 years of law enforcement experience.
The process for naming a new police chief by the city manager has not started, Assistant City Manager Melinda Carroll said Tuesday. She said she expects that process will begin in January.
The City Manager's Office is not accepting resumes or conducting interviews now, Carroll said.
MainStreet Cleveland will conduct an investigation into Marr's actions that will involve a third-party financial audit, according to Joseph Burton, president of the organization's board.
He gave no timeline for the investigation's completion.
Paul Leach is based in Cleveland. Email him at firstname.lastname@example.org.