June 01, 2020
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Former Portland police chief infected with coronavirus

David Guralnick | Detroit News via AP
David Guralnick | Detroit News via AP
In this Nov. 21, 2019, file photo, Detroit Police Chief James Craig, second left, speaks to the media at Detroit Public Safety Headquarters in Detroit. Craig has tested positive for the coronavirus.

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A former Portland police chief who now leads Detroit’s police force has tested positive for the new coronavirus.

James Craig, who was diagnosed with COVID-19, the illness caused by the coronavirus, in late March, talked about his experience with Detroit ABC affiliate WXYZ, saying it started with a nagging cough and allergy-like symptoms before taking a more serious turn.

“This is the real deal. This is a serious disease. … I know too many people that are positive with COVD that are unfortunately fighting for their lives in hospitals,” he told the TV station.

[Our COVID-19 tracker contains the most recent information on Maine cases by county]

Despite the illness and being under quarantine since March 27, Craig said he remains involved in decision-making at the Detroit Police Department.

The Detroit police force has been hard hit by the coronavirus. Nearly a fifth of its officers have been quarantined, while another 114 civilians and officers within the department have tested positive and two officers have died from the virus.

Before taking the helm of the Detroit Police Department, Craig served as Portland’s police chief from 2009 to 2011. In 2011, Craig left Portland for Cincinnati, where he became the city’s first black police chief. Then in May 2013 Craig announced he was leaving Cincinnati for Detroit, where he began his law enforcement career in 1977.

Craig also served for a time in the Los Angeles Police Department, where he rose to the rank of captain.


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