Interim RPD chief

August 27, 2010 • Editorial

Last week state Rep. Dennis Kintigh was sworn in as interim chief of the Roswell Police Department. He will be running the RPD while the city looks for a permanent replacement for Chief Rob Smith, who has retired. We applaud the city’s selection of Kintigh and we’re confident the freshman lawmaker will do an excellent job in running the department.

Kintigh has a great deal of experience when it comes to law enforcement. Serving nearly 25 years in the FBI before his retirement in 2007, he was assigned to offices in Los Angeles, Orlando, Fla., Washington, D.C., and Roswell. Serving in the field, Kintigh investigated and helped resolve numerous complex cases, some lasting for [auth] years, involving a wide range of criminal activities.

He is also a former U.S. Air Force officer and worked as an aerospace engineer. Kintigh holds a master’s degree in computer science from West Coast University in Los Angeles and bachelor’s degrees in mechanical engineering and aerospace engineering from the University of Arizona in Tucson.

Awarded the Special Award of Honor by the International Narcotic Enforcement Officer’s Association in 1996 and 2001, Kintigh was also the co-recipient of the New Mexico Sheriff’s Association Officer of the Year Award in 2006. He was the class president of Leadership Roswell in 2001.

Kintigh has indicated he doesn’t plan to make any major changes during his time at the RPD. That’s a sound philosophy for an interim chief. There’s no point making a lot of changes the next chief might discontinue. As interim chief, Kintigh is tasked with keeping the department in working order until a replacement for Smith is located.

However, we’re certain Kintigh and the department will mutually benefit during his time at the helm. His years of experience in law enforcement are bound to provide some ideas which could improve the department.

For his part, Kintigh will gain some valuable insight regarding the operations of our municipal law enforcement agency. Having a legislator who understands the challenges facing our city’s police officers can only benefit our community.

While Kintigh already has a vast amount of experience in law enforcement, this will provide him with yet another perspective. He’ll be learning not only from the members of the RPD but the other agencies he’ll be interacting with as he performs his duties.

We’ll be watching with interest as the search for a new chief progresses, but for now, we are confident the RPD is in the hands of a dedicated and talented steward who is committed to protecting our community. We’d also at this point like to extend our gratitude to Chief Smith for his service to Roswell and wish him the best as he enters retirement.

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