×

Hopefully, stability at hand for city’s police chief spot

We sincerely hope the Williamsport police chief merry-go-round has stopped.

In October, Mayor Gabriel J. Campana tapped Capt. Jody Miller as chief to replace retiring Chief Dave Young. Miller then decided before Christmas to pursue employment at the Williamsport Area School District.

He quickly resigned from his district job to rejoin the police department as a school resource officer with the rank of sergeant.

He will be at the district where he is going to oversee public transportation and safety, no small job, but not police chief.

Curious.

The mayor’s second appointee as police chief was Marvin “Doc” Miller, who retired three years ago. Miller was no sooner on the job before stepping away, citing personal reasons.

More curious.

So last week, Mayor Campana named Damon R. Hagan as chief and Aaron M. LeVan as assistant police chief. LeVan comes to the city from stints as a paramedic and a firefighter in Fayetteville, N.C.

Hagan was admittedly overwhelmed and thrilled to fill the opening and was greeted with thunderous applause at his swearing-in ceremony.

That’s important.

Police chief is arguably the toughest job in city government, given the mix of circumstances that accompany it each day. It’s no place for anyone but the most dedicated and competent person available.

And it needs to be a position embedded in steadiness.

Three changes in three months is the opposite of steadiness.

We are not here to assign responsibility for that or speculate on whys and hows of the situation.

It is just a matter of fact.

The city needs a solid leadership element in its police force so residents and taxpayers can feel confident their public safety needs are in reliable hands.

Hopefully, last week’s swearing-in ceremony signifies that stability is finally at hand.

COMMENTS