INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. -- Big changes are being made in the leadership of the IMPD.
On Wednesday police chief Troy Riggs announced he is stepping down as chief at the end of the year.
During a joint press conference with Mayor Hogsett, Riggs said the decision to leave was very tough personally and professionally.
The chief wouldn't say what his next job will be, but says it will not be in law enforcement and says his family’s financial security is his top priority.
Less than a year after being sworn in as IMPD’s police chief, Riggs announced his retirement from law enforcement.
“Right now I am not looking at any other police chief jobs. This is the finest department and has the best people,” said Riggs as he paused to control his emotions. “We have the best people and I'll end my career here.”
The emotional resignation ends Riggs' 4 year tenure with the city.
During his time as public safety director and this year as chief, Riggs re-introduced community policing with officers walking specific beats. Riggs also focused on a data driven approach to law enforcement and hired hundreds of additional officers.
“For the last 4 years chief Riggs has served this city admirably,” said Indianapolis mayor Joe Hogsett.
Mayor Hogsett praised Riggs for his work and says he’ll begin an immediate search for a new chief but wouldn’t get into specifics.
The local FOP president for one hopes the new chief will be hired in house.
“Our concern is if we go outside and find a new person we will slide backward in our progress,” said Rick Snyder.
Right now, the IMPD chief makes close to $118,000 a year. That’s considerably less than the $175,000 paid to the Columbus Ohio police chief and the $171,668 paid to the top cop in Louisville. The chief in St. Louis makes $127,000 and the chief in Cincinnati has an annual salary of $166,650.
“I have to think about the future of my family and financial future,” said Riggs. “At the end of the day financial considerations are there. I have to look at I just turned 50 and I've been honest about that.”
“The truth is the chief here is paid relative to other cities a bit lower if not considerably lower,” said Hogsett.
“We want to attract world class talent, but we’re trying to do it cut rate compensation and that doesn't seem to be a successful formula,” said Snyder.
Riggs received offers from many other cities to work in public safety, but says it’s time for a different career.
“The reason I've choose not to go back to policing is I’ve worked 27 years in public safety and worked for 4 departments. I can't think of another department I'd rather be chief of,” said Riggs.
We’re told he leaves the Hogsett administration on friendly terms, and his date of departure will be approximately January 1, although he may be committed to remaining in place into January to allow Mayor Hogsett the opportunity to name his successor.
Hogsett released the following statement Wednesday morning:
“At the end of this challenging year, Chief Troy Riggs will be leaving the City of Indianapolis to pursue other opportunities. While we are grateful for the innovative ideas that Troy brought to the table over the last eleven months, I have already begun the process of assembling a new IMPD leadership team that will build upon our efforts to reduce violent crime and protect our neighborhoods. I remain more confident than ever in the dedication and bravery of the men and women who proudly wear the uniform of IMPD, every single day. ”
Riggs says he currently has some offers on the table as far as his next career move, but he didn't delve into what those offers are. He said that announcement will come sometime early next year.
Marion County Prosecutor Terry Curry released the following statement after the announcement of Riggs' departure:
“The City of Indianapolis has been well served by Troy Riggs as Director of Public Safety and IMPD Chief. He has set the department on the correct path with a holistic approach to public safety, and I am confident that his successor will continue down that path.”