Suspended Warren police deputy commissioner sues city

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Warren Deputy Police Chief Matthew Nichols

Warren's Deputy Police Commissioner Matthew Nichols has been suspended without pay since summer pending a use of force investigation.

But now he's suing the city because he wants his job back and he wants it now.

"They won't let him come to work, he's been barred from the police department," said Jim Akhtar, attorney for Nichols.

Nichols lawyered up and filed suit against the city of Warren and his boss Police Commissioner Bill Dwyer. Since July, he's been on unpaid administrative leave.

"Can you imagine what this Christmas has been like for that family," Akhtar said. "No money coming in."

His suspension stems from a retail fraud case.  The Macomb County Sheriff was called in to investigate whether or not Nichols used excessive force while arresting a suspect. Their investigation did not lead to charges.

"Deputy Chief Matthew Nichols has never received one piece of paper charging him with any wrongdoing," said Akhtar.

Attorney Jim Akhtar says it's a breach of contract - they want Nichols' job back and back pay.

Commissioner Dwyer tells FOX 2 - Nichols has not been terminated and his position has not been filled. He sees the lawsuit as a bullying tactic.

"They suspended him without pay as of July trying to starve him out," said Akhtar.

Nichols was sued six times throughout his career with Warren PD - all claims of excessive force or racial profiling.  They were either settled or dismissed without prejudice.

Dwyer says he's still investigating the incident that led to this suspension - once it's over they will decide on proper disciplinary action, if any for Nichols.