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VIDEO: Carmichael Sworn in as New UC Davis Police Chief

UC Davis's new police chief is Matt Carmichael, who had served as interim chief in the wake of the pepper spray incident.

A new chief has been sworn in at UC Davis. 

Chief Matt Carmichael was sworn in at at the  Thursday in a small ceremony in front of friends, family, police officers, Aggie Hosts and members of the media. Carmichael had been interim Chief since the Nov. 18 pepper spray incident. 

Carmichael's appointment will last one year, at which point a national search will be conducted, for which Chancellor Linda P.B. Katehi said she hopes Carmichael applies. 

"Matt’s service over the past months has been extraordinary," Katehi said, noting the often-turbulant times. She also commended him for his openness. 

Katehi also announced that the police department will now be under direct supervision of the office of the provost. That change will take place on May 1. 

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Former Chief Annette Spicuzza resigned Wednesday after being on leave since shortly after the pepper spray situation erupted. 

"The University does not want this incident to be its defining moment, nor do I wish for it to be mine," she said. "I believe in order to start the healing process; this chapter of my life must be closed."  

Carmichael was sworn in just in time for the rowdiest day of the always-unpredictable Picnic Day.

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UC Davis included the following in a release shortly after the presentation: 

Carmichael is a 27-year veteran of law enforcement, the last 10 years as a lieutenant at UC Davis. He had served as acting chief since Nov. 21.

Katehi announced Carmichael’s appointment in a message to the campus community, saying his service as acting chief for the last five months “has been extraordinary, during some very demanding circumstances.”

Carmichael succeeds Annette Spicuzza, who announced her resignation April 18. She had been on administrative leave while the campus conducted an internal affairs investigation into the Nov. 18 pepper-spraying of demonstrators on the Quad.

In her message to the campus, Katehi praised Carmichael for reaching out to students, faculty and staff, and developing many strong, positive relationships.

“He is highly respected as a leader, adviser and innovator not only within our department and across our campus, but also throughout the law enforcement community,” Katehi wrote.

Carmichael said his top priority in the next few months will be to rebuild the relationship between the police and the campus community. “We’re going to be out meeting people and hearing about your needs and concerns,” he said. “We’re here to serve the campus community and keep it a safe place to work and live.”

Carmichael’s appointment as chief is for one year. During the latter part of his term, the campus will launch a national search for a new police chief.

Katehi also announced a shift in oversight of the Police Department -- effective May 1 and on an interim basis -- from the vice chancellor of Administrative and Resource Management, a post held by John Meyer, to the provost and executive vice chancellor, Ralph J. Hexter, who serves as the campus’s chief academic and operating officer.

“This transfer will ensure that, going forward, the department will be closely aligned with our core academic mission and values,” Katehi said.

Carmichael, who holds an associate’s degree in administration of justice from Napa Valley College, joined the UC Davis Police Department as a lieutenant in 2002. He has been responsible for patrol operations on the Davis campus, as well as serving as a public information officer.

He has managed the K-9 Program, Property and Evidence, Bike Unit, Crime Prevention, Crime Analysis, Detective Unit, Field Training Officer Program and Hostage Negotiations Team.

Before coming to UC Davis, he worked in the Pinole Police Department (Contra Costa County), where he started his law enforcement career in 1985. He was recognized as Officer of the Year in Pinole and Pinole Citizen of the Year.

At UC Davis, he has been the recipient of the chief’s Appreciation Award, the Centennial to Society Award and the Calvin E. Handy Leadership Award, named after a former police chief.

Carmichael received an Award of Distinction from the California Peace Officers Association, and twice received an Award of Merit for Outstanding and Superior Conduct from the California College and University Police Chiefs Association. He also is the recipient of U.S. attorney and Marshals Service awards.

He serves as the coordinator for the UC Davis Police Department’s participation in the Law Enforcement Torch Run, in support of the Special Olympics, and assists in fundraising for the Concerns of Police Survivors program.

The father of four also is active in the community, as an Exchange Club member, music boosters president and Cub Scout leader, and on behalf of the Ronald McDonald House.

Davis Resident April 19, 2012 at 11:47 PM
"Katehi also announced a shift in oversight of the Police Department -- effective May 1 and on an interim basis -- from the vice chancellor of Administrative and Resource Management, a post held by John Meyer, to the provost and executive vice chancellor, Ralph J. Hexter, who serves as the campus’s chief academic and operating officer." Moving the PD from one ineffective Leadership Team member to another. WTH?
Justin Cox (Editor) April 19, 2012 at 11:51 PM
Yeah, I suppose the purpose is to have the department managed by a leadership team whose responsibilities are more directly aimed at students, academics, etc. That was their explanation, at least.

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