In a state police report Brinkley's police chief admits to groping a female officer and engaging in sexual acts while employed at the department. The Monroe County prosecutor reviewed the report but did not file charges, saying the relationship appeared consensual.
The chief and the employee admit they dated in the past, but city leaders say the chief's behavior fits their sexual harassment standards.
During the meeting, Edwards sat silently on a row packed with community members while his attorney fought for his job.
"Bottom line is you don't have enough to show it's been a violation of city policy. You've got a lot of hearsay, you've got a lot of innuendo," said Edwards' attorney David Carruth.
For about 10 minutes Carruth tried to poke holes in allegations made by a current officer who spoke exclusively with KARK, detailing alleged sexual harassment on the job.
"It's been horrible, I have not been able to eat or sleep, my weight has been dropping rapidly. It's been a hostile environment," the alleged victim said in an August 9th interview.
Before the board, Carruth disputed it all claiming her accusations are based on politics, a desire for a promotion and poor evidence.
"Only when it came time to increase her rank is when it came up," he said.
When the mayor turned it over to the board, asking if any would like to make a motion to act on the appeal, all board members remained silent.
"No one is making any motions to continue this as an action, then the termination stand," said Mayor Billy Hankins.
The chief and his attorney say they were disappointed but not surprised.
"I appreciate the citizens who came out to support me, and my wife who came out to support me, everything is going the way I thought it would go," Edwards said briefly after the meeting.
"I think this council is committed to keeping any controversy as low as possible and unfortunately Michael got caught in that, " said Carruth.
Carruth says his client is planning to file a wrongful termination suit against the city of Brinkley.