NEW MIAMI, Ohio – New Miami village officials have hired a new leader to take control of the recently troubled police department.
Dan Gilbert, a Cincinnati native who took on the agency’s top spot as police chief June 15, said he plans to implement a community policing strategy in the village of roughly 2,200 people. He said residents can expect to see officers walking neighborhoods and getting to know the community better in coming months.
“I want residents to feel comfortable coming up to the office and the officers,” Gilbert told the Journal-News.
Gilbert’s hiring comes as the New Miami police department is working to heal from a host of missteps in 2014.
First, the village was dropped from it’s insurance in March because of excessive lawsuits and insurance claims. Village officials were able to get the municipality insured again but had troubles convincing an insurer to cover the embattled police department.
The village acquired a new insurance plan in May, which costs $18,600 per year.
Following the insurance debacle, the village council voted in April to fire former police chief Kenny Cheek, who made $40,000 annually. Council members ousted him following a disciplinary hearing where one Fairfield police officer testified that Cheek had choked a suspect. Cheek had also been named in two lawsuits, which accused him of using excessive force.
Gilbert, who was most recently a deputy with the Hamilton County Criminal Bailiff’s Division, will be paid a base salary of $40,000 a year, according to the village.
He said he’s not focused on past troubles with the police department and, instead, he’s working to create a better future for the department.
Read more at Journal-News.com.