Cam­bridge ac­cepts po­lice chief’s res­ig­na­tion

Dorchester Star - - Front Page - By VICTORIA WINGATE vwingate@ches­pub.com

CAM­BRIDGE — Cam­bridge Po­lice Chief Daniel A. Dvo­rak has re­signed from his post, ef­fec­tive Satur­day, April 15.

Cam­bridge City Coun­cil con­sid­ered and ac­cepted his res­ig­na­tion at their Mon­day, April 11 meet­ing. Ma­jor Mark Lewis was ap­pointed in­terim chief.

Ac­cord­ing to city man­ager San­dra Tripp-Jones, Dvo­rak cited per­sonal rea­sons for the de­ci­sion, among which were health is­sues. His con­tract re­quired 90 days no­tice res­ig­na­tion, but the coun­cil re­leased him of that re­quire­ment.

“He will be missed,” Tripp Jones said.

Dvo­rak is a 24-year law enforcement vet­eran and came to Cam­bridge via the Newport Po­lice Depart­ment in Rhode Is­land. He took over as chief in Jan­uary 2015 after for­mer Cam­bridge Po­lice Chief Ken­neth Ma­lik re­tired from his post Dec. 1, 2014. Dvo­rak was se­lected by a com­mit­tee of city of­fi­cials and res­i­dents from a list of 30 who had ap­plied for the po­si­tion.

Upon be­gin­ning his role as chief, Dvo­rak stated his mis­sion was to re­brand the depart­ment and make it great through lis­ten­ing to what the com­mu­nity needed and im­ple­ment­ing a few goals of his own.

Dur­ing his ten­ure, he ini­ti­ated sev­eral com­mu­ni­ty­based pro­grams to help fight crime while us­ing bat­tle-tested po­lice tac­tics to keep the public safe.

Dvo­rak made it a point, from the very be­gin­ning, to

be more open with the com­mu­nity, show­ing what po­lice work in­volves while build­ing trust with Cam­bridge cit­i­zens. He sought to re­build the com­mu­nity’s trust in their po­lice force through trans­parency.

“Part of the global ef­fort here is to re­store the com­mu­nity’s trust in us,” he said. “For the last decade, peo­ple didn’t re­ally know what we were doing and if they were asked ques­tions, they re­ally weren’t get­ting in­for­ma­tion.”

This ef­fort was man­i­fested through ac­tiv­i­ties and pro­grams, such as D.A.R.E., Na­tional Night Out, Shop with a Cop, the Com­mu­nity Po­lice Academy, the re­open­ing of the Pine Street po­lice sub­sta­tion and other com­mu­nity of­fices, and es­tab­lish­ing a so­cial me­dia pres­ence with Face­book and Twit­ter.

Dvo­rak also spoke at events held by com­mu­nity or­ga­ni­za­tions such as the an­nual Vet­eran’s Recog­ni­tion, the Dorch­ester NAACP an­nual meet­ing, the Cam­bridge Wo­man’s Club, and many more.

CPD also re­stored and strength­ened their re­la­tion­ships with the Dorch­ester County Sher­iff’s Of­fice, Mary­land State Po­lice, Dorch­ester County Public Schools, the Depart­ment of So­cial Ser­vices and other agen­cies through Dvo­rak’s ef­forts.

In his 2015 an­nual re­port be­fore the Cam­bridge City Coun­cil, Dvo­rak cited proac­tive policing and in­creased com­mu­ni­ca­tion with the com­mu­nity as the rea­sons for an in­crease in the num­ber of ar­rests and crimes re­ported.

“Part of the rea­son we saw the in­crease is be­cause we are work­ing harder,” he said. “When we are proac­tive, we dis­cover crime and make ar­rests. For ex­am­ple, in 2014 we had 240 drug ar­rests and in 2015 we had 386. It isn’t be­cause there are more drugs on the street. This is a 64 per­cent in­crease due to of­fi­cers be­ing proac­tive.”

“An­other fac­tor to be con­sid­ered is our trans­parency and com­mu­ni­ca­tion,” he said. “This has caused more peo­ple to make re­ports of crime be­cause they know we are doing some­thing about it.”

Dvo­rak also noted the suc­cess of a na­tional re­cruit­ment cam­paign, un­der­taken be­cause the depart­ment was suf­fer­ing from high turnover due to is­sues re­lated to salary, train­ing and a lack of vi­sion for the fu­ture.

The re­cruit­ment ef­forts brought in five new of­fi­cers, and Dvo­rak at­trib­uted this largely to the City Coun­cil’s ac­tions to re­struc­ture the start­ing pay to be more com­pa­ra­ble with other de­part­ments in the re­gion.

In ad­di­tion, the city re­ceived a $375,000 grant from the U.S. Depart­ment of Jus­tice to hire three ad­di­tional of­fi­cers to the force.

With the 2016 an­nual re­port, the city saw a de­crease in rob­beries, ag­gra­vated as­saults, and thefts, with an over­all 20 per­cent de­crease in Part 1 crime city-wide.

The re­port also high­lights many of the com­mu­nity pro­grams ini­ti­ated by the depart­ment and var­i­ous hon­ors re­ceived by CPD of­fi­cers.

Fol­low me on Twit­ter @ vic­to­ri­adorstar and on In­sta­gram @dorch­ester.star.

CHIEF DAN DVO­RAK

PHOTO BY VICTORIA WINGATE

Amer­i­can Le­gion Aux­il­iary Unit 91 on March 7, 2016, hon­ors one mem­ber of the Cam­bridge Po­lice Depart­ment, the Dorch­ester County Sher­iff’s Of­fice and Res­cue Fire Com­pany. Stand­ing from left, CPD Chief Dan Dvo­rak, CPD Pfc. Stephen Hack­ett, Unit 91 Pres­i­dent Pa­tri­cia Creighton, RFC First As­sis­tant Chief Adam Pritch­ett, RFC Chief En­gi­neer Martin Pep­per, RFC Pres­i­dent C. Wayne Cook, Chair­man Fran John­son, Sher­iff James W. Phillips Jr. and Deputy Joseph Car­pen­ter.

PHOTO BY DUSTIN HOLT

Cam­bridge Po­lice Chief Daniel Dvo­rak, Cam­bridge Mayor Victoria Jack­son-Stan­ley and Cam­bridge Com­mis­sioner Dave Can­non join chil­dren on Oct. 26, 2016, for the Cam­bridge Po­lice Depart­ment’s trunk-or-treat event in down­town Cam­bridge.

FILE PHOTO BY DUSTIN HOLT

Cam­bridge Mayor Victoria Jack­son-Stan­ley, left, con­grat­u­lates Cam­bridge Po­lice Chief Daniel Dvo­rak, at HIS swear­ing-in cer­e­mony in 2015 when he be­come Cam­bridge’s new po­lice chief.

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