Police chief search narrowed to six

Police Chief John Camper

The search for a new chief of police in Grand Junction has been narrowed to six men.

The Grand Junction Police Department received 73 applications for the department’s top spot, vacated Sept. 4 by Bill Gardner. Lakewood Police Department Chief John S. Camper has served as interim police chief for the past four-and-a-half months.

Camper is one of the six finalists for the position, and the only candidate from Colorado. City of Grand Junction spokeswoman Sam Rainguet said none of the other finalists has worked previously for the Grand Junction Police Department.

The five other finalists are:

Gary Adams, police chief, University Park, Texas, population 24,853.

Craig Black, assistant police chief, West Valley City, Utah, population 123,447.

Mark Puthuff, police chief, Fort Bragg, Calif., population 6,604.

Bob Richardson, operations commander, Irvine, Calif., population 207,500.

Chris Sutter, assistant police chief, Vancouver, Wash., population 163,186.

Black’s department recently gained national notoriety for investigating the disappearance of West Valley City resident Susan Powell, whose husband said he went camping in southern Utah at the time of Powell’s disappearance.

Rainguet said the city narrowed down the list of applicants based on information submitted by the candidates. The men will arrive for their first interviews with city employees Jan. 28 and stay through Jan. 30.

The city picked the six finalists based on type of experience and years in law enforcement, education, and the size of the community and police department in which the person served. Each candidate has approximately 20 to 30 years of experience in law enforcement, Rainguet said.

The city plans to hire a new chief in February or March.


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