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Leach named interim chief of Ironton Police

Capt. Jerry Leach has been chosen to run the Ironton Police Department until a new boss can be selected Š just don't call him "chief."

Chief William Garland will celebrate his retirement on July 4, the same day that Leach will become the interim chief of the IPD.

"Obviously, it's an honor to be selected by the mayor to fill in until they can get a permanent chief in place," Leach said. "But there's a lot of issues to deal with. We still have the budget problems and things of that nature.

"It's simply my job to keep things running smoothly."

Leach was selected to head up the department by mayor John Elam, who was unavailable for comment.

Ironton residents shouldn't expect sweeping changes Leach said, adding that might do more harm than good.

"As far as implementing new policies and procedures, that would probably be counter-productive to the new chief coming in, whoever that may be," Leach said. "What I will do is continue with Chief Garland's policies and procedures."

Though Leach may be taking over a few new responsibilities, he said he won't be expecting anybody to start calling him by a new name.

"I'm assuming it's going to be 'Captain Leach' because that's what I am," Leach said with a chuckle. "If anyone calls in and needs to talk to a supervisor I'll obviously field those calls, but I'm still a captain."

As set forth in the city charter, a new chief will be selected from amongst the captains on the force depending upon how well they do on a written exam, which is broken into administrative, budgetary and departmental sections, and a personal interview. The exam will be conducted by the Civil Service Commission.

Leach wasn't sure how long he'd be filling the post, but he estimated it wouldn't be more than 60 days as the notice for the chief's examination has already been posted.