Dozens of Petersburg Police officers sue city for overtime pay

Dozens of Petersburg Police officers sue city for overtime pay
Petersburg Bureau of Police (Source: NBC12)

PETERSBURG, VA (WWBT) - 28 current and former Petersburg Police officers and detectives are suing the city for unpaid overtime. It's a class action lawsuit, which means other employees can join in.

The suit alleges the Police Department's payroll system is in disarray and that there is not a dedicated employee to administer payroll. The suit also claims pay records are "nearly impossible to decipher and written in such a way that conceals the number of hours that Plaintiffs work and the number of hours Plaintiffs are being paid."

We've reached out to the city of Petersburg for comment. City Attorney Brian Telfair says the city was notified of the suit this morning and obtained a copy of it in the early afternoon. He says the city is still processing the document, but adds Petersburg does not comment on pending litigation.

Craig Curwood is representing the officer in the lawsuit. He issued the following statement this afternoon: "I believe that the Petersburg police officers, like those in other localities who have brought similar lawsuits, are owed back-pay for unpaid overtime wages.  My co-counsel and I are hoping to work with the City of Petersburg to determine if and how much money is owed to the officers.  It is our hope that we can resolve this in a manner that fully compensates all of the officers who join the case while minimizing taxpayer exposure of a long, drawn-out court battle."

This police overtime lawsuit is similar to suits already settled in Virginia cities like Richmond, Henrico, Norfolk and Hampton. In those cases the cities paid money to the suing officers.

We'll have much more on this story tonight at 5:00 and 6:00.

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