Medeiros Mov­ing On As Chief For Gus­tine

Escalon Times - - FRONT PAGE - By MARG JACK­SON mjack­son@escalon­times.com

Long­time Escalon Po­lice De­part­ment mem­ber Milt Medeiros wasn’t nec­es­sar­ily looking to make a ca­reer move. But the op­por­tu­nity arose and it was too good to pass up.

Medeiros, a sergeant with Escalon, is leav­ing the de­part­ment to be­come the new Po­lice Chief in Gus­tine, re­unit­ing there with his for­mer chief, Doug Dun­ford, who serves as Gus­tine City Man­ager.

“I came to Escalon in March of 2001,” Medeiros said. “I came in as an of­fi­cer and then was pro­moted to sergeant.”

Medeiros was orig­i­nally hired for the job by for­mer chief and cur­rent City Coun­cil mem­ber Walt Murken and worked with sev­eral chiefs and city man­agers dur­ing his 16-plus years with the de­part­ment. He also served a stint as in­terim chief for 20 months.

“I think it’s the op­por­tu­nity to im­ple­ment some of the pro­grams I’ve tried to ini­ti­ate in Escalon,” Medeiros said of what he is looking for­ward to the most in run­ning a de­part­ment. “I like com­mu­nity ori­ented polic­ing, it’s a phi­los­o­phy.”

He has al­ready met in­di­vid­u­ally with all the City Coun­cil mem­bers in Gus­tine and also has met a few of the of­fi­cers. He is very fa­mil­iar with Dun­ford, hav­ing served un­der him for sev­eral years dur­ing Dun­ford’s time as chief here in the city.

“I was not ac­tively looking,” Medeiros said of his new po­si­tion. “I have en­joyed work­ing for the city of Escalon.”

But the pro­fes­sional op­por­tu­nity to take over a small de­part­ment as chief came along at the right time.

“It sounded good, it sounds ex­cit­ing,” Medeiros said.

Dun­ford, who has stayed in touch with Medeiros over the years, said he will be a good fit for the Gus­tine de­part­ment.

“He and I share a lot of the same philoso­phies and we are still good friends,” Dun­ford noted, adding that the two had talked very in­for­mally in the past about the pos­si­bil­ity of Medeiros mak­ing the move. “We had sort of joked around about it, then got se­ri­ous.”

The for­mal start date for Medeiros is Thurs­day, Nov. 16 when he will be sworn in at a spe­cial City Coun­cil meet­ing.

“He un­der­stands small po­lice de­part­ments and what the city wants from its po­lice de­part­ment,” said Dun­ford. “We have the same is­sues, same prob­lems. I think we have a few more pa­rades than Escalon – we av­er­age 24 a year.”

Medeiros will take over a de­part­ment with nine sworn of­fi­cers, two non-sworn sup­port per­son­nel and a sergeant.

“His pro­fes­sional, his ethics will bring a lot to the po­lice de­part­ment,” added Dun­ford. “I am looking for­ward to work­ing with him.”

Gus­tine’s gain, how­ever, is Escalon’s loss and cur­rent Escalon Po­lice Chief Mike Borges said it is with mixed emo­tions that he watches Medeiros leave.

“When he gave me the no­tice, I said that I was happy for him and along the same lines, un­happy for me,” Borges ad­mit­ted. “Try­ing to re­place him and his in­sti­tu­tional knowl­edge and his pres­ence is go­ing to be very dif­fi­cult.”

Medeiros had been over­see­ing the field train­ing of­fi­cers, men­tor-

ing younger of­fi­cers and was adept at both ad­min­is­tra­tive and pa­trol du­ties.

“I’m not happy to see him go but I un­der­stand this was an op­por­tu­nity for him,” Borges added.

Medeiros started his ca­reer in law en­force­ment in 1977 with Tu­lare County and also worked pre­vi­ously for the City of Ex­eter.

“What I’ll miss is the per­son­nel, you make long last­ing friends,” Medeiros said. “You see in­di­vid­u­als come in, watch them grow and ma­ture and you like to think you had a hand in that de­vel­op­ment.”

The swear­ing in cer­e­mony for Medeiros is sched­uled at 5 p.m. Thurs­day, Nov. 16, his first of­fi­cial day as po­lice chief in Gus­tine.

TIMES FILE PHOTO

Escalon Po­lice De­part­ment Sgt. Milt Medeiros, left, shown in con­ver­sa­tion dur­ing a prior Cof­fee with a Cop event, is leav­ing Escalon to be­come the new Po­lice Chief for the City of Gus­tine.

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