Lafayette Police Chief Jim Craft Retiring
In an emotional press conference Friday morning, Lafayette Police Chief Jim Craft announced he will be retiring from the post on January 31, 2016. The announcement comes as Craft enters his 10th years as Chief. His retirement ends a 39 year career in law enforcement.
Craft said there is a "good succession plan in place". He went to on to say he has had extensive discussions with new Lafayette City-Parish President Joel Robideaux who asked for his assistance naming a temporary and permanent replacement.
The Chief had this to say at the press conference today,
“Although there were many ups and downs, I have thoroughly enjoyed my time at the Lafayette Police Department. Of course, the most challenging but most rewarding of the positions I have held is leading this agency and working with so many courageous men and women."
Chief Craft says their are many things for him and his officers to be proud of. "Lafayette is one of only four law enforcement agencies in the state of Louisiana that are accredited."
The Chief was choked up many times during the brief speech, and he even wiped away tears towards the end of the press conference.
He says one thing the department can do better, and they are the right path towards this, is building a better relationship with minorities communities within the Lafayette community.
Craft says there were many high profile cases throughout his tenor with the department that gained national press including the case of Dr. Richard Scmidt, the Southside rapist case and the Mickey Shunick case.
When getting close to the end of his remarks, the Chief was asked about what he planned to do next and where he plans to go on vacation. Chief Craft says he plans to investigate how to use a golf club, and he and his wife's first vacation will be to "Gulf Shore, the Cajun Riveria".