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Hagerstown Police Chief Smith announces retirement: 'It's just time'

12-year veteran to step down Sept. 6

Holtzman named acting chief

March 21, 2012|By DAN DEARTH | dan.dearth@herald-mail.com

Hagerstown Police Chief Arthur Smith will retire Sept. 6 after more than 12 years of service with the city, it was announced Wednesday.

Before coming to Hagerstown, Smith served on the Baltimore Police Department, where he achieved the rank of major and retired after 26 years.

Asked during a press conference Wednesday why he planned to retire, Smith said, “It’s just time. I want to give someone else a chance.”

He said he and his wife probably will move out West to the Colorado Springs area, where a son and a daughter live.

Smith said the city probably would hire his replacement from within the department.

“There’s plenty of talent there,” he said.

Hagerstown Police Capt. Mark Holtzman will serve as acting police chief. Holtzman has been with the police department for almost 23 years.

During his tenure in Hagerstown, Smith, 61, took a year of unpaid leave from 2005-06 to help train police officers in Afghanistan.

A news release about Smith’s retirement credits him for starting a more neighborhood-oriented approach to promoting safety and starting a sector management system similar to Baltimore’s; and for his involvement in broader intitiatives such as the consolidated 911 center and the central booking facility.

Smith was named police chief for Hagerstown on Sept. 23, 1999. He replaced Dale Jones, who resigned in May 1999 to take a job as head of the law enforcement branch of the National Marine Fisheries Service.

Smith’s grandparents had lived near Boonsboro and he had been coming to the area since he was a small child, he said in 1999.

“I like the town and it’s a challenging position,” Smith said when it was announced he was Hagerstown’s new police chief.

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