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State Police announce several leadership changes, describe trying to build trust

West Virginia’s new State Police superintendent, who has promised to assess the agency, has named several changes to senior staff.

“These decisions have been deliberate and thoughtful as we move forward with integrity, building upon the trust we have had with the citizens of West Virginia since 1919,” wrote Major J.L. Mitchell, the State Police spokesman, in an announcement of the staff changes.

State Police leadership has been under review since the Justice administration described a multi-pronged investigation. Jan Cahill, who had been superintendent since the administration first assumed office, resigned and was replaced by Jack Chambers.

The changes include promotions of B.L. Mankins to lieutenant colonel, E.D. Widmeyer to major and chief of field command, A.S. Perdue to major and head of professional standards, R.M. Hogan to captain with Troop 1, G.S. Losh to captain with Troop 5, L.J. Deskins to captain of Troop 8 Bureau of Criminal Investigation.

A couple of other announced changes were described as being made at the trooper’s request.

T.L. Forman had been captain of Troop 4 and requested a return to permanent rank of lieutenant and a transfer to lieutenant professional standards Troop 6.

J.E. Davis had been captain of Troop 8 Bureau of Criminal Investigation and requested a return to permanent rank of first sergeant and a transfer to first sergeant at Bureau of Criminal Investigations in Beckley.

Furthermore, some members of the senior staff petitioned and were granted retirement by the West Virginia State Retirement Board. They include Major T.L. Williams, Lieutenant Colonel D.M. Nelson and Captain G.L. Stalnaker.

“We appreciate their many years of faithful service to the State Police and the citizens of West Virginia,” Mitchell stated in the release distributed by the State Police.

Jack Chambers

The new superintendent, Chambers, has been describing efforts to steady the ship at the State Police. Chambers is a State Police veteran who more recently worked with the state Capitol Police.

Last month, Chambers said he would assess the leadership team at the State Police.

“The superintendent has the position to appoint people and put people in positions on the senior staff. I’m not one of those people to come in and make an example or anything like that,” Chambers said at the time. “However, I do foresee changes coming.”


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