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Arcata Selects New Police Chief


The city of Arcata announced today that the selection of a new police chief will be officially ratified by the council Friday during a noon special meeting followed by his swearing-in ceremony. The city selected Brian Ahearn out of a pool of 20 candidates in a process that included “multi-panel interview process and extensive background research and interviews,” according to a release. “I am excited to begin my service as Arcata’s Chief of Police,” Ahearn said in the release. “I look forward to supporting the men and women of the Arcata Police Department on a daily basis and working closely with members of the community, students, City leaders and staff, and other local law enforcement and public safety agencies. Together, we will help maintain a safe environment for all who live, work and visit Arcata.” Ahearn will arrive at the post just as Interim Chief Richard Ehle hands over the Arcata Police Department’s updated investigation into the 2017 stabbing death of David Josiah Lawson to the Humboldt County District Attorney’s Office. In an interview with the Journal, Ehle says he thinks there is “unequivocal physical evidence” linking a specific suspect to Lawson’s death. Read more coverage here. The new chief has 30 years of law enforcement background with the San Diego Police Department, including roles as acting assistant chief for Centralized Investigations and the Police Laboratory in 2017 and commanding officer for their Homicide, Gangs, Robbery and Economic Crimes Units. "After considering valuable feedback from community members, a rigorous multi-panel interview process and extensive background research and interviews, we found that Brian Ahearn’s remarkable and diverse police experience in San Diego combined with his drive to work in a coastal, university community was the top fit for our City,” City Manager Karen Diemer said in the release. Read the city of Arcata release below: The City of Arcata announced today that Brian Ahearn has been appointed Arcata Police Department’s new Chief of Police. The incoming Chief of Police will be responsible for ensuring that the Arcata Police Department is supporting the Arcata community’s core values essential to contemporary law enforcement, continuing the community’s high level of policing services, building vital community partnerships and growing successful public safety programs focusing on Plaza and business safety, neighborhood crime, property theft and drug use. Recruitment for the…

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