Richmond Coalition of Police throws support behind city’s interim police chief

At a news conference, the association's president said they’ve already opened a dialogue with interim chief Rick Edwards and plan to meet with him next week.
Published: Oct. 27, 2022 at 2:50 PM EDT
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RICHMOND, Va. (WWBT) - The Richmond Coalition of Police is supporting the city’s acting police chief.

At a news conference Thursday afternoon, the association’s president said they’ve already opened a dialogue with interim chief Rick Edwards and plan to meet with him next week.

“I think there was just a disconnect with the previous regime and with having that acting chief Edwards came up through the ranks, he knows how the police department operates, he’s been a patrol officer in this city, and so he’s been a detective in the city, then a detective sergeant and then a lieutenant in major crimes, he knows how the city operates,” said Brendan Leavy, RCOP President.

The group also says the interim chief plans to hold town halls at each of the city’s police precincts.

As for morale in the department, RCOP says it’s like things changed overnight.

“Morale has already improved. You know I don’t have a table to measure it, but I received hugs and high fives and texts and phone calls that how ecstatic RCOP members are with the change,” said Leavy.

RCOP says the interim chief will quickly make changes within the department.

While specifics weren’t mentioned, RCOP did speak about the importance of community policing and boots on the ground. The department is down about 150 officers at the moment.

RCOP also wants to be a part of any search to find a permanent replacement.