Former Medicine Park mayor speaks out against accusations

Former Medicine Park mayor speaks out against accusations

MEDICINE PARK, Okla._A former Medicine Park mayor is speaking out against accusations of sabotage that 7News first brought to your attention earlier this week.

In a story we aired Monday, Public Works manager Ray Reynolds blamed a leaking sewage problem on vandals after it was founds spilling into Medicine Creek. He said it was only one of a string of suspicious incidents that have taken place since the city's new government took over, and that he believed someone was intentionally causing problems in an effort to make the former government look good.

Dwight Cope, the previous mayor of Medicine Park for the last 10 years, says while he agrees there has been some bad blood between groups in Medicine Park for a few years now, he doesn't believe anyone has it out for the new government. He says there were no hard feelings when the City Council voted him out in favor of the city's current mayor. However, following our story, he says he's had a change of heart after believing the finger was pointed at him.

He also says he feels the accusations of sabotage are geared toward him, and adamantly denies any involvement. He says if there have been problems, he believes the culprit may be a lack of equipment maintenance.

"Just the fact the way they went about doing this...I'm not happy about it," Cope said.

Cope is referring to a phone interview with Reynolds on Monday. More specifically, he's referring to a quote from Reynolds, "I've been on board for about a month and I've seen a lot happening that's not supposed to. More to discredit the new government than make the old government look good."

Cope says he hasn't done anything wrong, and that he wouldn't want to hurt the community he has lived in and loved for 24 years.

"To imply that I have done things that are not legitimate is a lie, and I resent it," Cope said.

He says he doesn't think the leaking pipe was sabotaged, but more that it was neglected.

"There is a red light on the outside of the buildings and that indicates there is some kind of an issue. I know the light was on a few times during the week that I was aware of. I assumed it was being taken care of," Cope said.

Sewage was found making its way to the creek Saturday. Cope says he believes the disagreements and blame game will continue until there is a change in attitude.

"They are trying to vilify the people who worked their tails off and gave of themselves for 10 years to try to bring this place back. Until that mentality goes away, I don't know that there can be much of a resolution," Cope said.

Reynolds says he didn't mention any names and his quote wasn't directed at anyone in particular. The city's police chief confirmed they are working up a report on the broken pipe.

The sewage has been completely cleaned up and it is still safe to swim and fish in the creek. There is also a new, military grade lock on the pump house gate.