Lee Vance named Jackson's new Chief of Police - WDAM - TV 7 - News, Weather and Sports

Lee Vance named Jackson's new Chief of Police

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Source: WLBT archives Source: WLBT archives
JACKSON, MS (Mississippi News Now) -

Jackson Mayor Tony Yarber announced Lee Vance as his choice for police chief of the Capital City, but it's not official yet.

Vance has served as interim chief of JPD since former chief Lindsey Horton unexpectedly retired last month.

Vance will remain in that capacity until he's confirmed by the city council.

"Most of the people think it's his time, he deserved it from his long-term work in this city, and I feel the same way," Jackson Ward 5 Councilman Charles Tillman said.

He and Ward 2 Councilman Melvin Priester Jr. said they're very optimistic about the road ahead for Jackson's next police chief.

"We're very pleased with the nomination of Chief Vance, that Mr. Vance is someone who's very well-known in the community, and we expect it to be a very quick confirmation process," Priester said.

It's a full-circle journey for the 27-year veteran of the Jackson Police Department.

"I started off as a recruit, and I worked my way up from beat cop to sergeant, from lieutenant to commander, to assistant chief all through those years. From a professional standpoint, obviously it's a fulfillment," Vance told the crowd of supporters and media Friday.

Vance said becoming a police officer was a calling, a career he didn't want at first.

"God put me here because He wanted me here," Vance said. "And you work on His schedule, not yours, right? He picked the time for me to step into this, and Mayor Yarber obviously went along with that."

"Smart man," Jackson Deputy Chief Administrative Officer for Public Safety Marshand Crisler added, standing near Vance during the press conference.

Vance also discussed his philosophy on the future of the department Friday.

"We do a very good job of fighting crime in this city, right? All of our crime numbers -- well, not all of them -- but most of them are down across the board," Vance said. "What we have to develop more are our customer service skills."

Vance also wants greater police presence and more community outreach, building trust with business owners and residents.

Flanked by most of JPD's command staff during the announcement Friday, Vance said that support must also come from within the department.

"My job is to galvanize everybody. Let's go in the same direction to serve our citizens, because in the end, that's what all this is about," Vance said. "We have to serve the people that pay us."

That confirmation process could begin as early as next week.

Tillman said the mayor has to bring the nomination before the council first.

That could happen during the regular meeting Monday or a specially-called meeting by the council.

Priester expects it will take two to three weeks before Vance is confirmed.

 

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