Sixteen year Emeryville Police Department Chief and combined forty year EPD veteran Ken James announced his retirement at the February 17th Council meeting effective June 30th. “That is terrible news” noted Vice Mayor Nora Davis whose 27-year career in council parallels James’. Replacing James in the interim it was announced will be 30-year San Diego Police Department veteran and former Captain Dave Hall.
We interviewed Ken James in depth last year and he hinted at his imminent retirement in retrospect; “It’ll be a time when I think, ‘Okay’ I’ll know what I want to do and I’m ready to do it. But I don’t know what that is at this point!” When I caught up with James recently on what he ultimately found that pulled him into retirement, he quipped “40 years!” James began his career with the EPD as a patrol officer in 1975 and took over as Chief in 1998. James’ steadying influence in the department will be missed and his handling of the recent officer-involved shooting and subsequent protests were admirable. The EPD’s consistently high 80 percentile satisfaction rating is a reflection of his approach to policing and the EPD’s strong reputation will be his legacy.
Hiring of the Police Chief falls on the City Manager and since Sabrina herself will be leaving for Oakland by June 30th, whoever replaces her will be responsible for vetting & appointing a permanent chief to the position. Ironically, Hall appears to be coming out of retirement himself to assume this temporary, interim role. Not much is known about Mr. Hall and no official City Memo has been distributed yet but Hall’s most recent role on record was as interim chief of the San Diego Harbor Police where he worked from 1999-2003. The Harbor Police provide protection throughout the public tidelands, San Diego Bay and at San Diego International Airport.
Feature Image: SDPoliceMuseum.com