APD Interim Chief calls it quits - WALB.com, Albany News, Weather, Sports

APD Interim Chief calls it quits

October 4, 2005

Albany - Albany's Interim Police Chief is quitting. Bob Boren doesn't like the way the city is looking for a new chief. He says his last day at work will be November 11th.

Bob Boren has served as Albany's police chief for a year. He took over when former Chief Bobby Johnson retired after more than a dozen police officers were arrested within a year. Boren had wanted the job permanently, so today's announcement he's calling it quits came as a big shock.

Boren handed in his resignation letter Tuesday morning. In it, he told the city manager that he's retiring effective February with his last day leading the police force being November 11th.

"After 33 years in law enforcement, 17 years as assistant chief and over a year as the interim chief, I felt like if they wanted me to have the job they would have given it to me instead of having me go before a panel of people, who know nothing about the police department and its problems, to evaluate who they think and recommend should be the police chief," said Boren.

Last October, Chief Boren took over a police force plagued with low morale and by a lot of criticism from the community. Sixteen officers have been arrested for various charges within two years. The city then hired a head hunting firm to conduct a search for a full-time police chief. More than 60 people applied, including Boren.

"Do you feel it was a slap in the face they were going to do that," I asked him. "Well yes, it's just time to move on. You got know when to go," Boren answered.

City Manager Alfred Lott said, "It certainly wasn't our or my intent to insult him at all. My only intent was to conduct a fair, objective and comprehensive search."

Lott was shocked by Boren's decision to leave and said Boren was a top candidate for the job.

"I think we've lost an option, to be frank - a positive one." But Lott stands by a national search for a police chief. Alfred Lott "Because this position is so critical and important. Maybe the best candidate was already here, but that process would have brought that out."

Despite that, Boren made bold move today in opposition of the city hiring process. He says he's leaving a police force that is stronger now than when he took over.

"We've had some problems, and we've corrected them. The men and women you've got left are a good core of professionals who'll do a good job for your every day," said Boren.

The city manager hopes to hire a new police chief by December. He says he hasn't decided who'll serve as the interim chief once Boren leaves.

Several officers told us off camera that they knew Chief Boren was unhappy with how the police chief search was going, but they were surprised to hear he's leaving.

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