June 23, 2018
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Former Portland Police Chief James Craig confirms he’ll take Detroit job

By Gina Damron, Detroit Free Press

Cincinnati Police Chief James Craig confirmed at a news conference Tuesday morning that he will become Detroit’s next police chief.

Craig said he doesn’t yet have an official start date, but he told reporters during the news conference in Cincinnati on Tuesday that he won’t be at work there Wednesday.

“I’ll be northbound on I-75,” said Craig, who began his law enforcement career with the Detroit Police Department in 1977, according to records previously obtained by the Detroit Free Press through a Freedom of Information Act request.

Craig will fill the position vacated in October after former Detroit Police Chief Ralph Godbee Jr. retired amid a sex scandal. Chester Logan, who assumed the role of chief after Godbee’s departure, announced earlier this month that he would retire after helping with the transition of the new chief.

This is the second time Craig has tried for the job of Detroit’s top cop.

In July 2010, after former Detroit Police Chief Warren Evans resigned, Craig sent an email to Mayor Dave Bing expressing interest in the job, noting that he was born and raised in the city, according to records. Craig wrote that, when he was laid off in 1980 along with many other officers, he joined the Los Angeles Police Department, where he spent 28 years before becoming the police chief in Portland, Maine.

Craig, who is now the police chief in Cincinnati, wrote at the time that he had a good situation in Maine “and certainly my interest in Detroit is based on my love for the city, that I still consider home and leading your community’s police department would be an honor.”

According to his resume, Craig has a Bachelor’s of Science degree in business management from West Cost University in Los Angeles.

He held several positions at LAPD, including serving stints as the commanding officer over several areas within Los Angeles.

“Under my leadership we were successful for not only improving the quality of life for many residents, but experienced overall crime reduction for three years utilizing a variety of innovative strategies,” Craig wrote in his application letter in August 2010. “In particular, our community policing philosophy profoundly impacted our collaborative efforts in sustaining success in these areas. Additionally, we routinely achieved excellent reviews concerning our compliance with the federal consent decree.”

Craig noted in the letter that after his appointment to the chief position in Portland, he saw significant accomplishments, including establishing a community policing effort and restoring morale within the department.

In the August 2010 letter, Craig noted one major reason for his application: “I love the city of Detroit and still have deep family ties and would be honored to serve you and all of Detroit as your next police chief.”

Distributed by MCT Information Services


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