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York mayor says Arnold is new Chambersburg chief

August 28, 2008|By DON AINES

CHAMBERSBURG, PA. -- The York (Pa.) City Police Department is losing its second in command with the conditional appointment of Capt. David Arnold as the new chief of the Chambersburg Police Department, York Mayor John S. Brenner said.

"They're getting a great guy. Our loss is their gain," Brenner said Wednesday. "Dave is a consummate professional, dedicated not just to his job, but the people he serves, and he'll do the same there."

Arnold has been with the department for more than 20 years, Brenner said. The York City Police Department has an authorized strength of 106 officers, he said.

Chambersburg has an authorized strength of 34 full-time officers, and Mayor Peter Lagiovane told the council Monday night that he will be asking for two more positions to be added in 2009.

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Nearly 70 applicants were vying to replace Chief Michael T. DeFrank, who retired at the beginning of this year after heading the department for 25 years, Assistant Borough Manager David Finch said.

Finch said Wednesday that a conditional appointment had been made, but did not confirm that it was Arnold. The person appointed still must pass a background check, but a noncompetitive civil service exam will not be required because of the assessment process that the appointee went through, Finch said.

Those applications were reviewed by the Pennsylvania Chiefs of Police Association, which narrowed the field to nine, Finch said. The International Chiefs of Police Association then ranked the nine, and the selection committee for the borough decided to call the top four in for interviews, he said.

One person subsequently removed themselves from consideration, leaving three to be interviewed, Finch said.

The members of the selection committee were Lagiovane, Finch, Council President William McLaughlin, Councilmen Tom Newcomer and Glenn Manns, and Borough Manager Eric Oyer.

The council likely will vote on the appointment in September, Finch said.

While the department has not had a leader for eight months, Lagiovane told the council Monday that it has not been leaderless. Detective Sgt. Dianne Kelso and Sgt. Walter Bietsch have been ably handling the administrative and operational duties since DeFrank left, he said.

McLaughlin said he would not comment on the conditional appointment until the background check is completed.

Arnold did not immediately return a telephone message Wednesday.

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