Pleasant Hills losing five officers to retirement
Five Pleasant Hills police officers will retire by the end of 2013, leaving room for new hires and promotions within the 21-member department as the year progresses.
Those slated for retirement are Chief Ed Cunningham, along with Lt. Richard Kelly, Sgt. Richard Painter, Sgt. Joseph Kenney and Officer Craig Hall.
“The guy is great,” Pleasant Hills Mayor Warren Bourgeois said of Cunningham. “He has just been tremendous, and the borough is certainly going to miss him, but time marches on.”
The chief won't retire until the end of the year, so the search for a replacement hasn't begun.
“Being a policeman has meant the world to me,” said Cunningham, who has made good relations with residents a priority during his 37 years as a policeman in Pleasant Hills. He said he hopes he'll be replaced through a promotion within the department.
The department may have a different feel with new officers most likely being in the age range of 20 to 30, said Bourgeois, who isn't running for re-election this year after a long history in borough politics.
Council considering promotions and new hires, so that when the vacancies occur there will be officers in place, Cunningham said.
“The department will be very young, which is good because if you're chasing a bad guy over the hill you like a guy who's in good shape,” said Bourgeois. “We will have a very strong force and I'm certainly looking forward to seeing what happens next year.”
What Cunningham and Bourgeois hope will not change is the police department's relationship with the community.
“I think we have a great department,” Bourgeois said. “The police respect the residents, and the residents respect the police.”
Cunningham said that with all new hires in the department, “We've tried to take them under our wing, and show them the value of the positive relationship with residents.” Police “rely on the residents as an extra set of eyes and ears” in the neighborhood, he said.
Residents have participated in and supported police programs such as National Night Out, the Drug Abuse Resistance Education, or DARE, program and visits from Santa around Christmas.
“I think we probably have the best residents in the state,” he said.
Matthew DeFusco is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. He can be reached at 412-871-2311 or email@example.com.
Show commenting policy
TribLive commenting policy
You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.
We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.
While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.
We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers.
We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.
We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.
We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.
We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.
- Female mascot makes Baldwin Highlander history
- South Hills talent at center stage for ‘Chorus Line’ performance
- Brentwood considers leasing newly built municipal center