Q&A with James Craig: Should he have to take the test?

James Craig answers questions about his status

Should Cincinnati Police Chief James Craig take the test which would make him a certified police officer?

Each county sheriff in Ohio has to be certified, but police chiefs do not. It is up to each city to determine whether or not the exam should be given.

City officials recently gave Craig his one-year review and said that he is doing a terrific job. The review also said that he was hired to be a leader and he will continue to lead the Cincinnati Police.

The State Board says that taking the test would give Chief Craig "experience" credit, which would count for 95 percent of the training required. He already has the other five percent.

In our commitment to balanced news, Friday FOX19's Dave Culbreth sat down with the Chief and asked him some tough questions.

Q: Are you going to take the test?

A: I'm not going to take the test. What will this test show that my experience doesn't show? It's just that simple. This is just not right. Why am I gonna take a 200 question test, probably similar to the tests I've taken in the past, about basic policing, why?

Q: When you were hired and in your employment agreement, did anybody mention to you about taking a test?

A: You know, it was not in my employment agreement but there were some early talks about going through what I believed to be a refresher course on Ohio Revised Code.

Q: Laws of Ohio?

A: Yes, laws of Ohio. And that made sense to me. Certainly that would be important to go through that.

Q: Does it really matter if you're a certified police officer to do your job?

A: Well, principally speaking I should be certified, in principle. Is it gonna affect the way I do my job? No it will not. I can't write tickets, can't swear out affidavits, can't make misdemeanor arrests. I can carry a firearm like any other good American.

Q: Can you wear the uniform?

A: I can wear the uniform. I wear the uniform and I wear the uniform with a gun.

Q: Some people have said you'd set a better example if you took the test?

A: I am setting an example. Certainly leadership is near and dear to my heart. I expect my officers to fight for what is right and its right to fight this. This is absolutely wrong.

Q: Are you scared you might fail? Because people have asked me that?

A: No I'm not afraid of it. In fact, I haven't failed a test yet in all my years, 36 years, I've taken many promotional exams, I've excelled and exceeded expectations, I've gone through the FBI Academy, I'm in a doctorate program. I'm afraid of failing a test? I mean if that's all you got, you've got to come again, please. I mean.....(laughs)

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