DAYTON, Ky. (FOX19) - Police Chief David Halfhill announced he will retire as the city’s police chief effective Aug. 1.
Halfhill said in a news release Monday his decision to retire comes after “enormous thought and reflection.”
He served as a Campbell County police officer for 13 years before joining the Dayton Police Department. He is leaving the agency after more than 10 years of service there, including serving as the chief the last five. He’s also a resident.
“Being police chief in Dayton has provided me with an opportunity to work and partner with exceptional city staff members who strive daily to make Dayton the best it can be,” Halfhill wrote in his letter of resignation to Mayor Ben Baker and City Administrator Michael Giffen, according to the news release.
“While serving with the outstanding police personnel and city staff, I have also built relationships and partnerships with regional public safety leaders and many outstanding community and business leaders,” his letter states. “Together, we have made a difference in Dayton.”
Halfhill modernized the police department’s vehicles and equipment and updated and improved departmental policies, the mayor said.
That includes implementing several progressive policies such as prohibiting racial profiling and requiring a “use of force continuum” that clearly outlines the escalation of physical force that an officer should use to control a situation or the actions of people, according to the news release.
Halfhill also created and enforced a daytime curfew of school-age youngsters, started and supported a neighborhood watch program, and ushered the police department through an accreditation process administered by through the Kentucky Police Chiefs’ Association.
During Halfhill’s time as chief, Mayor Baker said the city’s crime rate improved dramatically. Dayton surpassed 50 cities on Kentucky “safest cities list,” increased in ranking to the 24th safest city in 2018 from the the 74th in 2014
“The city is extremely appreciative of Chief Halfhill’s service to our community, his hometown,” Baker said in the news release.
“He’s is not just a police officer, but has been and will continue to be an active member of our community, someone who has been ‘out there in the community,’ making Dayton a better place to live, work, and raise a family.”
In his letter of resignation to the mayor and city administrator, Halfhill wrote, “I will dearly miss serving as your Police Chief. I am eternally grateful for the opportunity you all gave me 5½ years ago and will remain a strong supporter of yours as a town resident. I appreciate you all, I respect you all, and I will miss you all.”
Mayor Baker said that the city will conduct a regional search to replace Halfhill and ask him to be involved in the search process.