Richmond Police Chief Alfred Durham announced Tuesday that he will retire at the end of the year, surprising many who’ve worked with and for him. They want the police department defunded and eventually abolished altogether. Copyright © 2020 NPR. Richmond appoints Bisa French as police chief. All rights reserved. Contra Costa County… Click here for instructions on how to enable JavaScript in your browser. Bisa French is Richmond, CA's new police chief. Our website is made possible by displaying online advertisements to our visitors. Assistant Chief French serves the city and neighborhood where she grew up with a commitment to justice both for families and the larger community. ARMOND LEE: We do realize that abolition is not an overnight venture. RICHMOND — Bisa French, who has overseen the Richmond Police Department on an interim basis since September of last year, has been named the city’s new full-time police chief. Bisa French is no longer Richmond’s interim police chief. Please support Transparent California. WESTERVELT: Now at age 45, French is making history as the first woman and woman of color to lead the 150-member force. “Agents were here conducting an investigation involving three suspects,” Richmond Lt. Bisa French said during a curbside press conference about an hour after the 3 p.m. shooting. Bisa French Interim Chief of Police at Richmond Police Department San Francisco Bay Area 500+ connections She's the first woman and woman of color to lead the force in its history. Bisa French said Tolosa fled from the vehicle on foot. Eric Westervelt, NPR News, Richmond, Calif. French becomes the first Black woman to lead the department, an honor that comes seven years after she became its first Black woman captain. Her first official day as police chief will be on August 1. “I’m delighted to appoint Bisa French, and gratified that our Police Chief is someone of such high quality, impeccable character, and unparalleled local experience,” Richmond City Manager Laura Snideman said in a statement. Members of the Richmond Police Officers association voted 117-19 … In recent years, the department has increased community trust and reduced crime, including a big reduction in homicides. Activists are cautiously optimistic she can foster real change. The city praised Chief French’s career and her leadership thus far, saying she’s committed to community policing, community partnerships and advancing RPD in the areas of technology, social media and training. Richmond police Capt. It's a moment that, as in many cities, has sparked new demands for police accountability. From The East Bay Times: “Bisa French, who has overseen the Richmond Police Department on an interim basis since September of last year, has been named the city’s new full-time police chief. They'd rather see that money spent on schools, libraries, anti-poverty and other social service programs. everyone): after a one-month closure, the owners of Richmond’s ever-popular eatery... By Kathy Chouteau French declined to comment on Brown’s departure outside the council chamber. The Northern Californian city of Richmond is facing those pressures. “I want to make this a permanent position,” she said. Chief French says she was affected by those killings as a cop, a mom and a woman of color. Protests for racial justice and police accountability continue, and more elected officials are reconsidering how their local law enforcement operates. Bisa French is no longer Richmond’s interim police chief. She believes her background gives her an added level of understanding and empathy to help Richmond navigate this difficult moment in American policing. French said she has what it takes to put the department back on track and fill the gap in its numbers. It's also a little sad the way it's happened," says Bisa French, who until days ago was Richmond police assistant chief. So it was more out of necessity. There are calls to cut or even abolish budgets, to realign the police mission and to radically improve oversight. In order to post comments, please make sure JavaScript and Cookies are enabled, and reload the page. City Manager Laura Snideman chose French. Get more info, plus volunteer or donate now with six different food banks at KBLX.com. You know, it would take time. In the wake of President Joe Biden's administration setting forth plans to administer 100 million COVID-19 vaccine doses during the first 100 days of... By Mike Kinney and Kathy Chouteau Our website is made possible by displaying online advertisements to our visitors. The authoritative record of NPR’s programming is the audio record. Please take a look at our new Victim Advocacy webpage for information related to our partnerships with victim advocacy groups and the newly opened West Contra Costa Family Justice Center at 256 24th Street Richmond, CA 94804. She's not denying that we need more housing security and food security. The 22-year RPD veteran has been serving as interim chief since September last year, when former Chief Allwyn Brown resigned following a no-confidence vote in his leadership by the police rank-and-file. Chief French's own budget was slashed 10%. This is "RPD Interim Police Chief Bisa French Profile" by Richmond Confidential on Vimeo, the home for high quality videos and the people who love them. Visit our website terms of use and permissions pages at www.npr.org for further information. Still, the young organizers of Richmond Revolution say they think they now have a police chief who will listen to them and is open to change. “At some point,… A new group called Richmond Revolution sprouted up. Prior to being police chief, she was part of Richmond police for 22 years joining in 1998. It would take years to accomplish. . French says living and raising three children here in Richmond in the San Francisco Bay Area and rising through the police ranks gives her knowledge of this community, as she puts it, from both a Black and a blue perspective. Bisa French was a single mother who became a cop at age 22. Please consider supporting us by disabling your ad blocker or whitelisting our site. BISA FRENCH: So I was a teenage mom before I got hired here. French wants to build on community engagement and other reforms here that have made Richmond something of a national model. “At this juncture in our nation’s history, the role of law enforcement is evolving rapidly,” Chief French said. She rose up the ranks including detective, sergeant, lieutenant, captain and assistant chief. I sat down with Richmond, California Police Chief Bisa French for this interview. NPR transcripts are created on a rush deadline by Verb8tm, Inc., an NPR contractor, and produced using a proprietary transcription process developed with NPR. Sgt. French was appointed interim chief in September and … The law enforcement veteran who in 2013 became the Richmond Police Department’s first African American and Latina captain — and also the youngest to ever hold the position — can now say she’s RPD’s first interim female police chief. In a statement, Chief French said she’s thrilled to continue in her role as the city’s top cop. She and Carey talk about how our own stories can better connect us to the people we serve. Currently you have JavaScript disabled. There would've been a public swearing-in ceremony this weekend, but the pandemic did away with that. Bisa French will also be the only black female police chief in the state of California. I think that was really huge. Richmond Police Chief Allwyn Brown Calls Express Story ‘Dishonest,’ ‘False,’ and ‘Under-Sourced,’ but Fails to Offer Evidence By John Geluardi Fri, Jul 20, 2018 at 2:11 PM Richmond police veteran Bisa French will be the department’s new chief after serving 10 months as its interim leader. You have entered an incorrect email address! CTRL + SPACE for auto-complete. Save my name, email, and website in this browser for the next time I comment. The Richmond Standard is funded by the Chevron Products Company. African American and Latina heritage to serve as chief. She then worked as a Detective in … Bisa French is Richmond, CA's new police chief. “It’s particularly important right now to honestly maintain a culture of excellence, trust, and transparency, in partnership with our community. French was born in San Francisco to a Puerto Rican mother and an African American father. French becomes the first Black woman to lead the department, an honor that comes seven years after she became its first Black woman captain. Her husband is an Oakland police sergeant. FRENCH: I do think I'm uniquely situated to understand the challenges that the community is bringing forth, as well as the challenges of being an officer and putting this uniform on. New story on NPR: Bisa French Takes On Historic Role As Police Chief In Richmond, California Natalia Beltz (@nataliabeltz) August 2, 2020 from Twitter August 02, 2020 at … Last month, Bisa French added another major milestone to her career. Click here for instructions on how to enable JavaScript in your browser. Want to make a significant difference in the life of a Richmond youth? RICHMOND — Bisa French, who has overseen the Richmond Police Department on an interim basis since September of last year, has been named the city’s new full-time police chief. Now, she’s simply police chief. The city's budget just took a big hit. As a young officer, she worked various assignments in Patrol including Community Policing Officer, Field Training Officer, and Bicycle Patrol Officer. Please consider supporting us by disabling your ad blocker or whitelisting our site. Yesterday, Bisa French officially became Chief French. A federal agent shot and critically wounded a man in the parking lot of a restaurant of a Hilltop area restaurant, Richmond police said Wednesday. The Richmond Police Department is concerned about crime victims and families in crisis. Write CSS OR LESS and hit save. As NPR's Eric Westervelt explains, her appointment to lead the police department is a historic first for the city. I mean, you know, she's acknowledging it and, you know, she says she wants to help work with us. WESTERVELT: But how the new police chief can help with those social challenges is the big question. WESTERVELT: So Lee and fellow Richmond Revolution founder Samone Anderson say, while they are fundamentally at odds with French on some things, they do think they can work with the new chief. Chief French has spent her entire law enforcement career with RPD. Bisa French is Richmond, CA's new police chief. She’s the first woman with African American and Latina heritage to serve as chief. And so I have to really - there's a line that I kind of tote and balance of being a person of color and wearing a blue uniform. Season Two: Carey talks with Richmond Assistant Police Chief Bisa French. Listen 4:07 Bisa French Takes On Historic Role As Police Chief In Richmond, California Aug. 2, 12 p.m. CT. Chief Bisa French began her career with the Richmond Police Department in 1998. Her leadership has been credited with creating a multi-disciplinary team to strategize on how best to serve the mentally ill; implementing a process for officers to receive Crisis Intervention Training; spearheading development of the Family Justice Center; managing the Mental Health Evaluation Team pilot project in which an officer and a mental health operative work together in engaging the mentally ill in crisis; overseeing the implementation of RPD’s body camera program; restructuring the RPD chain of command for sergeants and lieutenants to increase accountability and serving on the Contra Costa County Police Chief’s Association’s Racial Justice Task Force. Tolosa gave chase and led the sergeant to the 500 block of 38th Street, less than a mile away, where Richmond police Capt. Richmond’s Bisa French says she’s ready for historic role as police chief At 45, she becomes youngest, first woman and African American to lead city’s 110-year-old department. Chief French has had a good amount of experience at the helm of the 250-member police department with an annual budget of about $70 million. Richmond Police Officer Dies of COVID-19 Complications. Bisa French was selected as Richmond chief of police, the department announced Thursday. ERIC WESTERVELT, BYLINE: Bisa French says she didn't see herself as a future police leader when she joined the Richmond PD more than two decades ago. After years of struggling to provide her son with a good life, she is now the first African-American woman captain in the Richmond Police Department in Richmond, California and the youngest captain of any gender or ethnicity. On Thursday, the city announced that French has been appointed as the city’s new police chief. Now, she’s simply police chief. She’s the first woman with African American and Latina heritage to serve as chief. We aim to provide Richmond residents with important information about what's going on at the Richmond Refinery and in the community, and to provide a voice for Chevron Products Company on civic issues. After years of struggling to provide her son with a good life, she is now the first African-American woman captain in the Richmond Police Department in Richmond, California and the youngest captain of any gender or ethnicity. Bisa Frank is born and raised in San Francisco. I am Black, and I am blue. Bisa French was a single mother who became a cop at age 22. In 2013, she became RPD’s first African American and Latina captain — and also the youngest to ever hold the position. Accuracy and availability may vary. I got hired right at 22 years old. Get the best Richmond Standard stories delivered to your inbox. Police Chief Bisa French a 22-year veteran of the Richmond Police Department, has held several positions in the department, including detective, sergeant, lieutenant, captain and assistant chief. It is a challenging time to be a police chief in the U.S. I had no, you know - no thoughts of becoming the chief. She was interested in law enforcement, but she really needed a job after getting pregnant. She's the first woman and woman of color to lead the force in its history. This text may not be in its final form and may be updated or revised in the future. WESTERVELT: It's a tightrope made more difficult and wrenching, she says, following the Minneapolis police killing of George Floyd and the botched no-knock police raid that killed Louisville EMT Breonna Taylor. Her permanent role becomes effective on Aug. 1, according to a city statement. French will be the first Black woman to serve as chief, Lt. Matt Stonebraker, Richmond Police Department spokesman, said Thursday. She's the first woman and woman of color to lead the force in its history. The city's also feeling the strains of gentrification. Interim Richmond Police Chief Bisa French invites you to listen to the 102.9 KBLX Food Bank Radiothon presented by 1st Nor Cal Credit Union on Wednesday, May 6th. “In addition to her outstanding law enforcement qualifications, she’s someone who really knows the people, the issues, and the values and needs of the Richmond community.”. Virgil Thomas, who was with RPD for 24 years, has died after he reportedly caught the coronavirus on the … I’m proud that the people in our department and our City are committed to these values, which will guide my continuing leadership of the RPD.”. You know, she's not denying that these kids need more support in these schools. Richmond appoints Bisa French as police chief. The Richmond Police Department held a special ceremony on Thursday to honor its officers and pay tribute to those killed in the line of duty. RICHMOND, CA — Interim Police Chief Bisa French has thrown her hat into the ring as a search for a permanent police chief for the Richmond Police Department (RPD) is set to start in January. She was a single mother when she started out as police officer in 1998. Richmond speaks out against proposed flight path over city, Contra Costa County aims to deliver 1M COVID-19 vaccine doses by July 4, After holiday hiatus, El Garage reopens today with new offerings, Richmond Promise seeks mentors for program scholars, San Pablo pastors seek funding for soon-to-launch re-entry home, TikTok video featuring dancing Richmond principal goes viral, Richmond council votes to suspend street sweeping citations, consider voluntary program. Income and property values are up, but poverty and inequality remain big concerns. Bisa French. Bisa French, in her own words Share this: Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window) Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window) This was basically my way to be able to support myself and my son at the time. Please support Transparent California. SAMONE ANDERSON: Every conversation we've had with her, she's not denying that we need more mental health resources. Great news for fans of El Garage (a.k.a. Activists are cautiously optimistic she can foster real change. Alameda County Community Food Bank Armond Lee is one of the organizers. On Thursday, the city announced that French has been appointed as the city’s new police chief. Activists are cautiously optimistic she can foster real change. Of police at Richmond police for 22 years joining in 1998 myself and my son the. French interim chief of police at Richmond police department San Francisco final form and may be updated revised! 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