Chicago police superintendent to step down in 2 weeks
CHICAGO (AP) — The Chicago Police Department's superintendent announced Wednesday he will step down in two weeks, seven months before he turns 63, the mandatory retirement age for Chicago police officers.
Superintendent David Brown made the announcement the day after Chicago's mayoral primary election in which crime in the nation's third largest city was a central issue.
“I’ve accepted a job opportunity to be the Chief Operating Officer of Loncar Lyon Jenkins, a personal injury law firm with seven offices in Texas,” Brown’s announcement said. “I will be stepping down as Chicago Police Superintendent effective March 16, 2023 so the incoming mayor can begin the process as soon as possible to hire the next Superintendent.”
“It has been an honor and a privilege to work alongside the brave men and women of the Chicago Police Department," the announcement said. “I will continue to pray that all officers return home to their families safe at the end of their shift. May the Good Lord bless the city of Chicago and the men and women who serve and protect this great city.”
Brown will turn 63 on Oct. 22.
Mayor Lori Lightfoot, who did not advance to next month's mayoral runoff election, issued a statement commending Brown for setting a record number of illegal gun recoveries for two consecutive years, leading a double-digit reduction in violent crime in 2022, “significantly expanding the resources for officer wellness; and promoting more women to the senior exempt ranks than ever before in the history of the department.”
“I personally want to thank him for his service to our city,” Lightfoot's statement said.
Lightfoot named Brown, a former Dallas police chief, to be Chicago's police superintendent April 2, 2020.
First Deputy Eric Carter will be appointed as interim superintendent until a new mayor is sworn into office, Lightfoot said.
Public safety dominated the mayoral election, in which Lightfoot lost her bid for a second term. All of Lightfoot’s eight rivals said they would fire Brown and replace him with someone else. That included the two candidates who advanced to the April 4 runoff, Paul Vallas and Brandon Johnson.
Lightfoot has defended Brown, saying the city needed an outsider to lead the department after years of problems and a federal consent decree ordering CPD to make changes. She also argued that after crime spiked during the pandemic, the city was making progress in reducing homicides and some other crimes. Her rivals said it wasn’t enough.