UPDATED: Police chief’s newsletter offends some

Chief reprimanded. A satirical newsletter pilfered from a police chief’s desk has ruffled some feathers in Vermilion.
Jessica Cuffman
Oct 28, 2013
UPDATE: Vermilion’s mayor has reprimanded the police chief for writing a satirical newsletter containing inappropriate content.

Mayor Eileen Bulan said a letter of reprimand will be placed in Chief Chris Hartung’s personnel file, to document his misconduct.

Bulan became aware of the newsletter, “The VPD Insider,” after copies were anonymously mailed to area newspapers.

When Hartung returned to Vermilion Monday after a week-long training engagement, he met with Bulan to discuss the four-page document.

“Although your purported newsletter was authored in jest and not intended for public distribution, the contents of the same offended certain individuals,” Bulan stated in the letter.

“You explained that it was not your intent to embarrass any officer or employee of the police department, which is an explanation I believe,” she said. “But to avoid any further incidents, refrain from authoring any other like publication.”

Hartung readily admitted to authoring the document, which he has since said was an inappropriate use of work time and equipment.

He told the Register he wrote it in about 15 minutes during a lunch break. He declined to offer any further comment this week.

In one story, the satirical newsletter suggested the police department saved money on energy costs by removing a refrigerator from an employee’s office. Another story said the police department was grappling with a crisis one day because no one could decide where to buy lunch.

When asked about “The VPD Insider,” a four-page document mailed anonymously to the Register, police Chief Chris Hartung confirmed he did author the piece.

“I wrote it in about 15 minutes on a lunch break,” he said. “Creative writing is one of my fortes.

“I remember, I was actually eating a I guess.” Quarter Pounder with Cheese,” Hartung said.

The newsletter jabs at department employees, local politicians and the department’s fundraisers for the police dog. It was likely an inappropriate use of work time and equipment, Hartung said.

“It was in my desk,” he said. “Someone decided to poke around, The single edition of the newsletter, dated July 31, 2013, was never distributed through the department, he said. Any consequences of authoring the newsletter — which makes light of hairlines, intelligence and eating habits of employees and former employees — will be up to Mayor Eileen Bulan.

“I’m sure I’ll be in her office Monday,” Hartung said.

Made aware of the document this week, Bulan said she’ll meet with Hartung Monday when he returns from a week of training.

“We’re definitely going to look it over more and go from there,” she said. “I’ll read the newsletter and then hear background on it.” “It certainly isn’t appropriate to be doing it on the city computer,” she said.

It’s unclear what consequences Hartung may face.

Download the newsletter below, harsh language included, viewer discretion is advised


Julie R.

I didn't say anything about election fraud. I just said in my opinion the only reason some anonymous person gave Hartung's satire to the Journal and the Register wasn't because the unknown person was 'offended' by it --- it was only because of the up and coming mayor election and they wanted to get what was said about Eileen Bulan's opponent out there. I said the same thing about the reinstatement of the two fired Sandusky cops when the Erie County courts (Tone & Binette) publicly chastised the city and the city manager over the firings --- it's election time and their buddy Murray is running for city commissioner.

Also, public records show that Chief Hartung doesn't even live in Erie County. Like your law director, Ken Stumphauzer, he resides and pays property taxes in Lorain County.


Quote: I have a gut feeling this was a bit of sabotage done only to get the police chief's derogatory remarks out there about the former Vermilion mayor, Jean Anderson, who is running for mayor again. Sounds like a fraudulent statement to me about the election. What shall we call it?

Julie R.

Call it whatever you like.


Julie nobody likes a prude.

Julie R.

I'm not a prude. Had the satire not included comments about Eileen Bulan's opponent Jean Anderson, my opinion would have been different.

As for the satire --- once again, I personally didn't think it was all that funny. The satire that I used to enjoy were the ones that a Bryan DuBois used to write for the SR --- especially the satire over the Kim Nuesse firing. I didn't like DuBois after I found out that he set the disbarred attorney Elsebeth Baumgartner up because he was afraid of the corrupt old clowns in the Erie & Ottawa County legal system, but I still found his satire hilarious.

And last but not least --- for good reason I detest Baxter & Co.'s favorite Lorain County law firm of Stumphauzer & O'Toole that Vermilion's law director Ken Stumphauzer belongs to.


Chief Hartung wrote the following"

"1. I have no idea where the page 5 of 9 stuff came from. That was on Jessica's copy from whoever sent it in. This was sent to several different places by different means. I heard about this a few weeks ago from other reporters. Jessica would have to answer that."

Looking at the 4 pages, I see the following:

Page 1 (8 of 9)
Page 2 (5 of 9)
Page 3 (4 of 9)
Page 4 (2 of 9) I noticed the "page 9" on the original copy

"Inside this issue"
Horoscope 2
Porn Review 3
Easy ODI tips 4
Mustached Guide 5
Another K9 Fundraiser 6
Cooking With Dave 7
Whine Review 8


Julie you don't like guys..heard over coffee that Liz is a whack job. That opinion was from 1that worked in the realm of her.