Harrisoburg police chief retires

Harrisonburg Police Chief Donald G. Harper will officially retire on March 31, 2012 after announcing his intention to retire in 2011. Harper has reached the mandatory retirement age for public safety officials in the state of Virginia.

On Tuesday, March 27, the Harrisonburg City Council passed a resolution honoring Harper’s career with the city. Among other things the resolution acknowledged the growth of the department through Harper’s 20 year tenure. During his service, HPD has expanded to employee 86 sworn officers, 13 full-time and three part-time civilian employees and 16 auxiliary officers. The department also added K9 officers, bike patrols, a Citizen’s Police Academy and computer forensics capabilities.

“Don has been a great asset to the city,” said City Manager Kurt Hodgen. “The Harrisonburg Police Department has thrived under his leadership and we are extremely thankful for all of his hard work and dedication.”

Effective April 1, 2012, Captain Dan Claytor will serve as the Acting Chief of the department. It is anticipated that Claytor will serve in that position for approximately two months.

The City Manager is planning to announce the selection of the new chief early next week.

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