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Anne Kirkpatrick introduced as Oakland's new police chief

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NewsHubOakland Mayor Libby Schaaf officially announced the appointment of the city’s newest police chief on Wednesday. « I am so excited to be in Oakland and be your chief of police, » Anne Kirkpatrick said during the news conference. « I think it’s the greatest opportunity in America policing today. « She is Oakland’s first female police chief, filling a void left open for seven months as the new head of a force that’s been rocked by scandal and a succession of leaders. « I do have the courage to hold officers accountable, but that includes myself, » Kirkpatrick said. « But also to the men and women of the Oakland Police Department, in this chief, I have the courage to stand by you. « Schaaf said community input was the cornerstone of Kirkpatrick’s selection. « Oaklanders wanted a leader with integrity, able to change culture, » she said. Kirkpatrick has 34 years of law enforcement experience. A former chief in Spokane, she most recently worked in Chicago, appointed by Mayor Rahm Emmanuel to lead reform efforts there. Some hope she’ll do the same here. « We’ve got to give her a chance, like we do everybody. Just got to give her a chance to see what’s going to happen, » Oakland NAACP spokesperson Cynthia Adams said. In Oakland, Kirkpatrick will not only have to gain the trust of a skeptical community but also the support of the rank and file. « Through all these turbulent times, Oakland police officers have been working hard for this community and now we hope we have an equally hard-working chief of police to guide us into the New Year, » Barry Donelan said. Unlike prior chiefs, Kirkpatrick does plan to live where she works. « I just told everybody I’ve got to save up some money, y’all are expensive, » she said.

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