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New IPD chief sworn in

Dan Johnson came to work Tuesday morning with the rank of captain, but ended the day as Ironton’s new chief of police.

Johnson was appointed chief of the Ironton Police Department during a swearing-in ceremony in Mayor Rich Blankenhip’s office. Johnson fills the position left empty by former IPD chief Jim Carey, who retired in August.

Johnson has been with the IPD for the past 18 years and most recently was the day shift captain. Before joining the IPD, Johnson had nine years of active duty law enforcement service in the Air Force.

“We’ll be, hopefully, more vigilant than ever,” Johnson said of taking the reins as chief. “We have a pretty good record of solving most of the crimes that come through here. I’d like to prevent them before they happen, if at all possible.”

The officer also said he would like to see the police department take a proactive approach in the community and make the public aware of their presence.

Johnson was one of two captains who took the civil service exam for the chief’s position. Detective Chris Bowman, who was serving as interim chief, also took the exam.

The city charter specifies that the chief is chosen from the city’s captains who have at least two years experience with that rank. Four men qualified.

Those who want the promotion must take a test and submit to an interview with the city’s civil commission. The test contains questions on administration, budget and other aspects of the police department.

Johnson thanked the civil service commission for having faith in him.

“I will do my very best to make sure I don’t let them down,” Johnson said.

Blankenship said the civil service commission is in the process of narrowing down candidates to fill three patrolmen positions. He said candidates have already taken the civil service test and the physical fitness test but are still awaiting the interview process.