Officer fails to follow department policy

Deputy does not cite fire chief’s wife after crash.
Jessica Cuffman
Oct 9, 2013


A Huron County deputy landed himself in trouble for failing to cite a fire chief’s wife after she caused a car crash.

Sgt. Steve Shupp, a 13-year deputy, recently received a written reprimand because he failed to follow department policy, Huron County Chief Deputy Ted Patrick said.

Shupp responded to a two-vehicle crash Sept. 20 on Chenango Road in New London Township, where Valerie Chapin pulled her vehicle out of a driveway and into the path of an oncoming vehicle, Patrick said.

Shupp, who is also a New London volunteer firefighter, chose not to cite Chapin, the wife of New London fire Chief John Chapin. Patrick was reviewing incident reports when he discovered the issue.

“I asked him, ‘Did you not cite her because that’s your fire chief’s wife?” Patrick said.

Shupp said he didn’t cite her because he thought he had discretion in the matter, Patrick said.

The department’s policy clearly states drivers must be cited when they’re at fault in a crash. Discretion in traffic violations applies to minor speeding infractions and such. “This clearly was not,” Patrick said.

Chapin will be cited for causing the crash — likely an improper backing citation, Patrick said.

“He was given clear instructions to do that,” Patrick said.

A written reprimand will be placed in Shupp’s personnel file, documenting the incident as a violation of failure to observe rules, policies or procedures. Shupp will also undergo re-training on the rules, Patrick said.

Shupp also received a written reprimand in June 2012, after asking a dispatcher to use the sheriff’s office computer to run a search that was not related to work, Patrick said.


Peninsula Pundit

Another black eye for both the police and firefighters!
Obviously the officer does not know his department regulations or the limits of his authority.
This a recurring theme in all these shameful actions in the news of late.


He should be fired!

Darwin's choice



Vote no ...... it seems awfully harsh to fire the man, over that.... don't you think?... He should definitely be wrote up and let it known that this type of favoritism is not tolerated, and that it is his duty as a cop yo be fair and un biased to all people..... he needs to know how important the image of him and the department is..............Shupp, get it together and use better judgment. Your actions reflect the entire community and the entire law enforcement community as a whole.


Shame on the Sheriff and his lead officers, who discipline their officers in the paper, is not the employee file enough..What other county office humiliates their employees in the paper.. Enough of the BUS, and his public display of PR. As all it is is BS! Some employees have targets on them, and others who do worse are never heard about, LIKE the missing GUN, Running a Stop sign and injuring a father and child..Like being on Medical and should be on disability while double dipping! Dane Howard has got to be Replaced as Sheriff of Huron County.

Julie R.

This kind of unfair and biased crap goes on all the time. It's most prevalent in the courts.

AJ Oliver

There's your "rule of law".


The law doesn't apply to cops, they do whatever they want and get away with it!!

Erie County Resident

If this deputy was having such a personal struggle with this why didn't he call in another agency to handle the accident? Many other departments do this to eliminate these kinds of problems.
OSP, a local PD, or at least even another deputy with no ties to the FD.


Keep up the good work Sheriff Howard. I as a citizen think it's refreshing that you reveal all that happens at your agency, good or bad. We need more people in public service like you. Thanks for all you do !!!