OPELIKA, AL (WTVM) - For the first time in 22 years, the City of Opelika has named a new Chief of Police.
After reviewing 52 applications for the position, Mayor Gary Fuller decided to bring in Opelika native and veteran of the Opelika police force, John McEachern.
"It was not an easy decision, but I think I made the right decision with John and he'll do a great job," explains Fuller.
Chief McEachern was with the Opelika police department from 1974 to 1988 serving in various positions on the force, before joining the Federal Bureau of Investigations for 24 years.
"I look forward to not only working with the officers of the Police Department, but the City Council and the Mayor and just constantly striving to grow as a department and have a place in this community to where again the people will be proud that they have a fine law enforcement agency," says McEachern.
Mayor Fuller says the major reason for McEachern's selection was his experience.
After leaving OPD, McEachern worked for the FBI throughout the nation and had responsibilities ranging from white collar crimes to the violent crime squad in Las Angeles, concentrating on gangs.
"His experience of law enforcement, his knowledge of working with other agencies is great. It's very important that the Opelika Police Chief, the Auburn Police Department, the Lee County Sheriff's Department, the Alabama State Troopers, you know as John said, we're all in this together," says Fuller.
With his knowledge and expertise in the law enforcement field, McEachern is excited to once again serve the people of Opelika.
"I've got a lot of friends in these departments and there is no doubt in my mind that we are going to work well together serving all the citizens, not just of Opelika, citizens of auburn and citizens of lee county," explains McEachern.
Chief McEachern's first day of duty will be Monday, April 15, 2013.