Reason.com on Mayor Frank Melton:
Since he came to Jackson from Tyler, Texas, to run WLBT-TV in 1984â€”leaving his wife and biological children behindâ€”Melton had constructed a persona for himself as a tough-on-crime folk hero. He bought billboards where he plastered mugshots of accused drug dealers. Once a week, heâ€™d end his TV stationâ€™s newscast with a â€œBottom Lineâ€ rant, often focusing his ire on some public official who had challenged his vigilantism and do-it-yourself justice system (Melton, for example, has often allowed young men wanted for serious crimes to turn themselves in to him and stay at his home rather than bring them to the police).
Going all Buford Pusser on an occupied duplex might have been extreme, but itâ€™s par for the course for Mayor Melton, whom no one will ever accuse of lacking for a sense of drama. Among our mayorâ€™s greatest hits:
â€¢ He once stopped a school bus on a busy interstate because he â€œneeded a hugâ€ from the kids inside.
â€¢ Heâ€™s been known to strap weapons to his chest and leg that he has no authority to carry or conceal, then wear them in public.
â€¢ He regularly suits up and leads SWAT-style â€œraidsâ€ on homes, businesses, and even roadblocks in busy trafficâ€”without cause or a warrant.
â€¢ He has tried to close down the cityâ€™s strip clubs for moral reasons, despite no authority to do so.
â€¢ He once bulldozed an elderly womanâ€™s house, promising to build her a better one. He then forgot to build it.
Wikipedia’s entry on Melton.