UPDATE ……Power Struggles at the Police Department !

     When I posted the following piece this morning about the Police Chief and the internal power struggles that were happening in the Police Department, and rumors that the Chief might not last long, I had no idea that he would resign just hours later! 

                            Chief Roberts and his replacement ?

     To read the Chief’s resignation letter, check out Brittany Wallman’s (Sun-Sentinel) blog post at http://weblogs.sun-sentinel.com/news/politics/broward/blog/2008/05/lauderdale_police_chief_slaps.html 

     If you didn’t catch my post this morning, I’m including it again here…..

     The Fort Lauderdale Police Union and the City’s Management and Commission reached agreement yesterday on a contract, but just barely. All the Police Officers except one refused to vote to protest what they consider to be unfair and incompetent management. 

     The blood has been boiling for months, tension is high, and many neighborhoods have seen abrupt increases in their crime levels.

     Behind the scenes, all this turmoil has sprouted an internal fight for control.

     George Gretsas, the City Manager has ultimate control, but those just under him have been jockeying for position:

                                         The Chief of Police

     Chief Bruce Roberts started as a Patrolman 35 years ago and has served as Chief for about 6 years. He has been in the unenviable position of instituting the will of the City Manager and keeping the respect of his troops. That has put him (at times), at odds with both.

                                         The Assistant Chief of Police

     Assistant Police Chief Robert “Bobby” Carter is an up and comer.It is widely believed that he is high up in the running should the Police Chief not opt for a new contract himself in November, or even leave earlier. Many of the Police Officers feel that Carter has taken the side of the City Manager over them.

                                                          David Hebert

     Assistant City Manager David Hebert was personally selected by City Manger Gretsas as his man in the Police Department. The rank and file have never been happy with that position. Hebert is considered by many in the Department as the main source of their unease. They point to Hebert’s lack of Police experience and believe he was put there to see that Gretsas’s edicts were being carried out.

     Now that the Police contract dispute is over, many expect changes at the Department. Stay tuned!

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