Courtesy of the Richmond Standard
Richmond Chief of Police Chris Magnus has accepted an offer to lead the police force of the City of Tucson.
After a nationwide search, Magnus became one of two finalists to replace outgoing Chief Roberto Villasenor. Over the weekend, however, the other top candidate, Dallas Deputy Chief Malik Aziz, removed his name from consideration.
Tucson City Council will hold a vote on Magnus Tuesday, said Lane Mandle, a spokesperson for the Tucson City Manager.
Magnus has worked for the Richmond Police Department since 2006. His departure would affect a community that widely credits him with improved relations between residents and police and a steep decline in crime.
In 2003, there were a total of 9,026 property and violent crimes in Richmond, according to police data. Under Magnus in 2008, there were 6,712 and then 5,464 in 2013.
Last year, Richmond’s homicide total of 11 was the city’s lowest since 1971, and a far cry from the 47 homicides in 2009.
Magnus’ reputation for building better relationships between law enforcement and the community received national attention. Last year, he was summoned by the U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) to assist in a high-profile investigation related to racial unrest in Ferguson, Mo.
Magnus has said he is open to a new challenge, and that may be provided in a larger police department. The police chief of Tucson oversees 942 sworn officers and about 300 civilian personnel, while Richmond has fewer than 200 sworn officers.