Mayor Jones Statement Concerning Retirement of Police Chief Ray Tarasovic
Today, Mayor Dwight C. Jones issued the following statement during a joint press conference held with Richmond Police Chief Ray Tarasovic:
“I’m here to announce the decision of Ray Tarasovic to step down as police chief for the City of Richmond. Ray plans to return to a life of retirement and will officially leave the post as of February 20th.
“Chief Tarasovic and I have been in discussion for some months now about his plans. When Ray joined the City of Richmond in February of 2013, he allowed me to draw him out of what was a fifth retirement when he agreed to serve the citizens of Richmond again. It was clear at the onset that he was here to fill a gap in leadership in our police department and that he was willing to do so for as long as necessary during my tenure.
“Ray has been an excellent police chief. I’ve appreciated all of the energy and effort that he has put into the job. He has worked with a real heart for the community of Richmond and the public that he serves and loves. When I think about my time as Mayor, I know I will always think fondly of Ray Tarasovic.
“The Richmond City Police Department has performed well under Ray’s leadership over the past two years. With his leadership, and that of his able and committed command staff, we’ve held steady on improving public safety in the city of Richmond. We have faced some challenges as all urban centers do, but there is no doubt that we have a police department that we can be proud of and that adds positively to the fabric our community.
“I want to take a moment to mention recovering officer William Turner, who was shot in the line of duty last week. I’ve remained in contact with Officer Turner’s family and our prayers and support remain with him and his loved ones. We’ll continue to do everything that we can to support all of our public safety officials and we’ll continue to work to find the necessary resources to provide increasing support.
“Concerning the leadership of the department going forward, considerations have already been underway for a replacement. We have some interviews and reviews to complete, and expect to be announcing a final decision by the end of the month.
“I offer my heartfelt thanks and gratitude to Ray Tarasovic for this time that he has dedicated to the city of Richmond. We are wishing him all the best in his pending retirement.”