Chief: Retirement Will Make Room For Mayor’s Agenda

By: KKTV Email
By: KKTV Email
Colorado Springs Police Chief Richard Myers says he

Chief Myers

Colorado Springs Police Chief Richard Myers says Mayor Bach told him he is ready to "make a change in direction," and has agreed to make room by retiring from the CSPD.

KKTV 11 News learned Monday afternoon that City Council Members were informed just after noon on Monday that Colorado Springs Police Chief Richard Myers is going to retire.

There have been rumblings among the police department for several days, but this is the first confirmation of his departure.

The following quote was sent in an email from the City's Communications Officer:

“When Mayor Bach was elected, I told him I was here to serve, and would do so loyally and do my best to lead the department in the direction he wanted to take the City, until such time that he felt he needed to bring in his own chief. Recently, he informed me he is ready to make a change in direction, and he is continuing to methodically create his own management team. Consequently, I have agreed to make room for this to happen by retiring from the CSPD. I have been positioning the PD to make the changes sought by the Mayor, and have every confidence that the men and women of the Department are well prepared to implement those changes."

Myers was appointed Chief in January of 2007, after previous stints leading police departments in Michigan, Illinois and Wisconsin.

City Council members tell 11 News that Chief Myers had been recently voicing complaints about downsizing and budget cuts within his department. During his tenure, the department's cuts have totaled more than $5 million. An additional $1 million could be cut in 2012.

As a result of those cuts, Chief Myers made the decision to focus resources on violent crimes, meaning property crimes like burglaries and break ins were no longer a priority.

KKTV 11 News spoke to Mayor Steve Bach about the cuts. He said, "our budget for next year maintains services. It maintains boots on the ground, but it does not increase services. The reason for that is that we're concerned about the economy."

When asked about pressure put on Chief Myers, the Mayor's answers were unclear. He did say, however, that he wishes Myers the best in the future. He also talked about a new direction.

"I campaigned on a pledge to transform our city government so that it works for everyone again,” Bach said. “And I can tell you that we have serious financial challenges in this city. We have escalating costs. We have revenues that are not predicted to increase that much anytime soon. So, if we don't change the way we operate, if we don't bend our cost curve, then we're heading for very serious challenges here in a few years."

11 News asked him what that will mean for concerned citizens.

"This has no impact on the level of service," he said.

Colorado Springs Police Protective Association President Peter Tomitsch says held a press conference Monday afternoon to discuss the retirement. He said he was shocked and saddened by the news. He also praised Chief Myers leadership during rough economic times.

“I think that we’ve got to give Mayor Bach a chance and let him go in the direction he feels the city needs to go in," Tomitsch said. "I would just like to call attention to the fact that Chief Myers was incredibly successful in what he did here under some very challenging and tumultuous years.”

Other public officials have also released written statements.

“I am sorry to hear that Chief Richard Myers will no longer be at the helm of the Colorado Springs Police Department," said District Attorney Dan May. "In my many dealings with Chief Myers, I have always found him to be a consummate professional; thorough, honest and dedicated to the safety of the community we serve. I would like to wish the Chief the best of luck in all his future endeavors.”

“Sad to see Chief Myers go, we have really had a good partnership, and will continue to have a good partnership with CCPD," said Fountain Chief Todd Evans, "They’ve been great partners to work with. Sad to see the chief go, and understand it can be very taxing on his family and I wish them the best.”

"Chief Myer has been an exceptional leader for the Colorado Springs Police Department," said Police Foundation of Colorado Springs President Kyle Hybl. "He's truly been a pleasure to work with."

Keep checking this page of updates.

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Comments are posted from viewers like you and do not always reflect the views of this station.
  • by Bryan Location: Colorado Springs on Oct 5, 2011 at 08:34 AM
    I thought I lived in Colorado Spring and not Chicago. Politics here are starting to be like Chicago, bad and crocked. Keep the people informed now there is an idea.
  • by anonymous Location: c/s on Oct 4, 2011 at 10:12 AM
    WHAT,S REALLY GOING HERE!!!!!!! and just what is being with held from the citizens of C.S.???? Why do we need to bring in an out of state chief. I,m sure we have enough will qualifed leaders right here. Our town is a mess right now and we need someone who wants to help make the wrongs right. Not sure about Bach, or Shorman as far as that goes but Myers was not the right guy for our town . We,re in trouble. Yes I did vote this last mayor election so I can have a honest opinion.
  • by angry in springs Location: north colorado springs on Oct 4, 2011 at 08:37 AM
    This Mayor is a moron I heard through sources he is going to ask Maketa to head his Police Department. If he does that I will have lost all faith in elected officials. How can a guy with no degree and only jail experience become the head of a Police Department.
    • reply
      by kevin on Oct 6, 2011 at 01:13 PM in reply to angry in springs
      angry, I don't know about Maketa's degree, but his experience largely exceeds the jail. He commanded the SWAT Team at one point, during which time he stood down four members of the Texas Seven at gunpoint while they revved the engine of their getaway car. Also, EPSO deputies are FORCED to serve in ALL areas of the department in order to advance in rank. I know all of this because I took the EPSO Citizen's Academy and therefore am making an INFORMED statement. Unlike you. Also, I've met both Maketa AND Myers. I wouldn't trust Myers to babysit my kids.
  • by Dano Location: CS on Oct 4, 2011 at 08:09 AM
    Myers has needed to go for a while. The department has developed a pattern of saying one thing and doing another. Hooters was just another case in point. Not responding to traffic accident during peak ticket writing times, not responding to property crime calls regardless of the victim or the ability to collect evidence and put offenders away. Capping it was denying rumors of his departure on Friday to announce his retirement Monday. Hopefully the new chief will motivate CSPD into an effectice PD.
  • by Nobama_homer on Oct 4, 2011 at 08:05 AM
    Finally a Mayor with guts to clean up house! City attorney and now the chief, thank you very much and good job!
  • by Nobama_homer on Oct 4, 2011 at 08:03 AM
  • by Margaret Location: Colorado Springs on Oct 4, 2011 at 06:53 AM
    I did not vote for Mayor Bach, I bet a lot of people are really thinking now on how they voted. Seems like a strong Mayor listens to himself only and no one else.
  • by D Location: Colorado Springs on Oct 4, 2011 at 05:24 AM
    As a whole CSPD need to clean house. They are very unprofessional and only respond to " major crimes ". When I need help I just call the Sheriff Office.
  • by Earlene Location: Colorado Springs on Oct 4, 2011 at 04:57 AM
    I am very sorry I voted for this mayor, I can not believe that the media hasn't covered what this mayor is costing the tax payer with all the people he is hiring for his "cabinet", the double salary that Cox is getting, the cost of his citizen parties and the remodeling of his office. And why is Bach not letting anyone know what his agenda is, media ask harder questions, we need answers.
  • by Otis From Mayberry on Oct 3, 2011 at 11:56 PM
    I have a couple of old DUI's, do you think I can put my name in the hat for the next Police Chief of Colorado Springs, and have a good chance in winning? Ok a show of keyboard strokes, who all would vote for me? Say yea
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