Mar. 11—The pensions of two former Glynn County Police officers who were indicted for perjury, violation of their oath of office and making false statements will be under review when they apply to collect their benefits.
Former officers David Matthew Haney and David Sassler pleaded guilty to lesser charges under Georgia’s First Offender’s Act. Their pleas, convictions and sentences have not been released.
Katie Baasen, Glynn County’s public information officer, said the two officers have not collected their retirement.
“They have deferred vested pension benefit that can be paid at their normal retirement date or early retirement date,” she said. “They are not collecting pensions.”
Both former officers were originally accused of lying and covering up information about another former officer, James Cassada, who was allegedly sleeping with a confidential informant while serving on the now-disbanded Glynn-Brunswick Narcotics Enforcement Team, as well as the squad’s involvement in a fatal police pursuit.
Hassler, a former captain with the narcotics team, was charged with one count of perjury, one count of making false statements and five counts of violation of his oath of office. Haney, a former lieutenant with the squad, was indicted on three counts of violating his oath of office and one count of perjury.
When the former officers apply for their pensions, Baasen said the county pension committee will address the defined benefit pension plan related to the issue.
“Notwithstanding any other provision in the plan to the contrary, in the event a participant is convicted of a public employment related, drug related or other covered crime, the participant’s participation and membership in the plan shall terminate and the participant’s benefit shall be reduced and forfeited, in the manner and to the extent provided under O.C.G.A. Sections 47-1-21 through 47-1-25,” she said.
The pension committee will consult with legal counsel to navigate the process, she said.
The pensions are under review now, Baasen said. If necessary, the issue will be addressed at a regularly scheduled pension committee meeting.
Haney worked at the Glynn County Police Department from September 2006 through December 2019. His law enforcement career began with the Blackshear Police Department, where he worked from May through December 2004, and the McIntosh County Sheriff’s Office from December 2004 though August 2006.
Hassler worked for the Glynn County Police Department from September 1999 through April 2019, Brunswick Police Department from April 1995 through September 1999 and the Nahunta Police Department from August 1994- through April 1995.