Statham police corporal and department training officer Steve Martin has been promoted to the position of Chief of Police.
Martin assumed his new duties on March 26.
The hiring committee received 25 applications for the position according to Statham City Clerk Susan Gabriel.
Of those who submitted applications, 11 were interviewed. Gabriel said the selection committee then narrowed the pool to five applicants before ultimately hiring Martin.
Martin said his transition from corporal to chief has gone smoothly so far.
“It’s been great,” he said. “Chief Tripp left me in a great position. He has already done a lot of the things that needed to be done to grow the department.”
While Martin said he inherited a well-run department, he has several items he is working on in order to improve the level of service provided to the community.
At the top of his agenda is the implementation of a community watch program. Martin said he is also working to build a better relationship with the business community. Martin said many of his officers have never worked the day shift and, as a result, have never met some of the local business owners. Martin plans to rotate shifts for some of the officers in order to provide an opportunity for more interaction between members of the business community and the department.
“We’re working on a lot of proactive things,” he said. “I don’t want the only time people see us to be when they have an issue.”
Martin first joined the Statham Police Department in May 2008. He left the department for a brief stint in the private sector before returning to the police force.
He replaces former Statham Police Chief Roger Tripp who retired on March 31. Tripp had served as chief since 2005.