Top ranks in SLO Police Department filling up

Three get promotions recently, leaving only one sergeant’s position open in the force

acornejo@thetribunenews.comFebruary 10, 2013 

The San Luis Obispo Police Department promoted three individuals last week — bringing the department’s top level staffing close to complete.

Lt. Keith Storton, a 20-year veteran with the department, was promoted to captain. He joins Capt. Chris Staley in overseeing the department.

Storton will manage the administrative side of the department, including detectives, records and dispatch. Staley, who has been a captain since 2009, will handle patrol operations.

localStorton fills a vacancy created by the retirement of Capt. Tom DePriest in January 2012.

Sgt. John Bledsoe, who has been with the department for nearly 15 years, was promoted to lieutenant. He will oversee the investigative bureau.

Officer Chad Pfarr, who has been with the department for 13 years, was promoted to sergeant.

Police Chief Steve Gesell administered the oath of office to all three at a standing-room-only ceremony on Feb. 6 in the City Council chambers.

The promotions nearly complete the top ranks of the department. One sergeant position remains vacant.

Staley said the promotions will allow the department to move forward with a new community action team, expected to be launched in the next month, which will assign two patrol officers to problem areas in the city.

Those officers will be charged with managing behavioral problems that have become an issue in specific areas, such as downtown or at San Luis Obispo Creek, said Staley, who will oversee the program.

Reach AnnMarie Cornejo at 781-7939. Stay updated by following @a_cornejo on Twitter.

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