Dawson's new police chief familiar face - WALB.com, South Georgia News, Weather, Sports

Dawson's new police chief familiar face

Dawson's Public Safety Director Tommy Poupard. (Source: WALB) Dawson's Public Safety Director Tommy Poupard. (Source: WALB)
Chief Poupard has worked his way up the ranks. (Source: WALB) Chief Poupard has worked his way up the ranks. (Source: WALB)
Chief Poupard is three weeks into his new job. (Source: WALB) Chief Poupard is three weeks into his new job. (Source: WALB)
DAWSON, GA (WALB) -

Dawson's new police chief is no stranger to the department.  

Tommy Poupard has worked 30 years in law enforcement, 29 of those years with the Dawson Police Department.

He has quietly worked his way up the ranks, including serving as the recent interim police chief after the former Public Safety Director, Charles Whitehead, was indicted on a misdemeanor.

Whitehead was forced to resign under terms of a plea deal.

Poupard said he wants to address two issues as chief, including improving the relationship with the sheriff's office.

"The next thing I'd like to do is build a better working relationship with the Sheriff's Department. We are both small agencies, so it takes all of us to work. We have got a fairly good working relationship, we want to make it better, " said Chief Tommy Poupard, Dawson Police Department.

Poupard said the biggest problem is recruiting and retaining good hires.

He wants to find a way to find and keep the best officers.

Poupard's full title is Public Safety Director, and he manages the city Fire Department as well. There is an estimated 35 personnel combined in both departments.

Poupard's appointment comes after former Dawson Police Chief Charlie Whitehead pleaded guilty to a misdemeanor for making false statements and writings.

Prosecutors said he signed off on a stolen trailer that he said he inspected but didn't. 

Whitehead was ordered to resign by as part of a plea deal.

He had been with the department since October 2004.

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