The Guthrie City Council met Monday night in a special meeting on the ongoing litigation with Guthrie Police Officer Mark Bruning. The council went into executive session immediately after being brought to order by Mayor Steve Gentling.
The executive session lasted approximately 25 minutes. When the council reconvened, Ward III Councilman Gaylord Z. Thomas read the following statement from the council: The Guthrie City Council after significant consideration has determined not to pursue an appeal to the Oklahoma Supreme Court in regards to Arbitrator Mark L. Reed's Award on the Mark Burning Arbitration. The City of Guthrie still has an interest in pursuing a settlement on this matter that would be amicable to all parties. Short of reaching a negotiated settlement the City of Guthrie will abide by the Arbitrator's award and suspend Officer Mark Burning without pay for a period of six months and reinstate him to his former position as Lieutenant. It should be noted that Arbitrator Reed found that the City established by clear and convincing evidence Officer Bruning's conduct of exercising poor judgment and abuse of power warranted punishment, up to and including termination. However, the arbitrator mitigated the original termination penalty. The grievance was sustained in part. Arbitrator Reed found that Officer Mark Burning's conduct warranted severe discipline.
The council took no votes in the executive session and no other action was taken. The council adjourned for the evening at 6:30 p.m.
When asked after the meeting when Bruning would be returned to work, Guthrie City Manager Leroy Alsup responded, "The attorneys are working on it."