Many citizens spoke out trying to help the chief of police save his job, but Mayor Dwight C. Jones announced on Feb. 12 that the chief of police has been replaced, according to the Richmond Times-Dispatch.
Mayor Dwight C. Jones seeks to change the department’s leadership after starting his second term in office just a month ago.
Chief of Police Bryan T. Norwood's last day is Tuesday, Feb. 12. Chief of Police Ray Tarasovic's first day is Wednesday, Feb. 13.
Mayor Jones stated:
"We've reached a mutual agreement that his time as Richmond police chief has come to an end. We certainly wish Chief Norwood much luck in his endeavors going forward."
Tarasovic was the assistant chief in Richmond under Rodney Monroe, who preceded Norwood as the city’s top police officer before leaving to take the chief's job in Charlotte, N.C, in 2008.
He has served in a variety of capacities since then, including several consulting jobs, but has continued to maintain a home in Richmond's Fan District since 2005.
Mayor Jones said when Tarasovic was Richmond's assistant chief before there was a 34 percent reduction in major crimes as well as a 43 percent reduction in homicides.
Mayor Jones substantiated his decision by saying:
“He’s a seasoned officer and he’s well prepared for the task at hand."
Sources say Norwood has been looking for a new job for at least a year and that his relationship with Jones is rocky. Norwood was turned down less than two weeks ago for the police chief job in Raleigh, North Carolina.
It was no secret that Norwood was searching or a job elsewhere. Jones said, “and, quite frankly, we’ve been looking at other opportunities as well.”
Norwood has enjoyed strong support among community and faith leaders in Richmond, where violent-crime levels have generally been low during his tenure.