Supervisor Goodwin Calls on Milwaukee Fire and Police Commission to Suspend Police Chief Search
MILWAUKEE – In December 2020, the Milwaukee Fire and Police Commission (FPC) appointed Milwaukee Police Department (MPD) Assistant Chief Jeffrey B. Norman to Acting Chief. Since this appointment, the FPC has conducted a nationwide search for a permanent Chief.
County Supervisor Russell Antonio Goodwin, Sr. released the following statement calling on the FPC to permanently suspend its search for a new Chief and allow Acting Chief Norman the opportunity to complete the duration of former Chief Alfonso Morales’s term:
“Currently, our city has an urgent need to show strength and stability. In my observation, Chief Norman has gone to great lengths to repair and improve the relationship between MPD and the community in a short time. He has the knowledge and skillset to continually be an asset to MPD for years to come. We need someone who knows the tendencies, intricacies, and dynamics of the City of Milwaukee and MPD internally and externally.
“Stability improves citizen trust and frightens criminals. Milwaukee is a very fragile city right now. People are hurting, struggling, homeless, and we are battling a pandemic. With many of the challenges facing the City of Milwaukee such as violence, reckless driving, auto theft, human trafficking, assaults, and robbery, making a wrong move can be detrimental to the health and heart of our city.
“With all factors considered it can take 5-10 years to really implement departmental changes and policing strategies—and most of all gain the trust and support of the community and police department. If those policies and strategies don’t work or are only average, it could set the city and MPD back a decade.
“The uncertainty of not having a permanent leader can affect the spirit and morale of the department. It can also cause stress and anxiety among officers publicly and privately.
“I believe Chief Norman is doing a fine job, and he deserves the opportunity to finish this term in its entirety. I also believe he should be asked to serve beyond this term. We are truly blessed to have a man of his caliber serving in this capacity. Even though there are other good candidates, I believe Acting Chief Jeffrey B. Norman is best fit to continue in this role.”
Acting Chief Norman was appointed to the MPD in 1996. He served as an Officer, Detective, Lieutenant, Captain, and Assistant Chief before being appointed Acting Chief.