Virginia Beach City Manager appoints 30-year veteran from Cincinnati as new Chief of Police

Virginia Beach

VIRGINIA BEACH, Va. (WAVY) — Virginia Beach City Manager Patrick Duhaney has selected veteran police leader Paul Neudigate as the next chief of Virginia Beach Police.

Neudigate is a 30-year veteran of the Cincinnati Police Department and currently holds the rank of assistant chief and commands the patrol bureau, which includes 800 sworn officers plus professional staff.

His first day in Virginia Beach will be October 14, 2020.

“Paul is a consummate professional whose experience, community orientation, emotional intelligence and progressive policing philosophy made him the right choice to lead the Virginia Beach Police Department,” said Duhaney. “Even though the police chief recruitment was already closed before I was named city manager, I appreciated that staff held up the process so I could be a part of it.”

In a press release sent Monday afternoon, City Manager Patrick Duhaney, who is also from Cincinnati, listed out Neudigate’s accomplishments in the city including:

  • Collaborating with other city departments and community councils to implement initiatives designed to stabilize neighborhoods in need.
  • Establishing a robust Crime Gun Intelligence process to include ShotSpotter, a gunshot detection system, and the ATF’s National Integrated Ballistic Information Network (NIBIN)
  • Introducing working group that specifically addresses problematic locations where liquor consumption contributes to violence and disorder.
  • Implementing the Place-Based Investigations of Violent Offender Territory (PIVOT) program, an award-winning problem-solving initiative which focuses on specific locations and disrupting environments that foster criminal activity; responsible for a 50% reduction in shooting violence in the focus area during the first year.
  • Assisting with developing a new gun violence initiative that uses a comprehensive strategy addressing the three sides of the crime triangle (offender, victim, location) and augmented by Crime Gun Intelligence processes that reduced total shooting victimization by 26% from 2015-2019.

“His focus on intelligence-led data-driven strategies along with an emphasis on how technology can enhance policing and community safety has resulted in some of the most significant advances in policing in Cincinnati, the release said. “Under his leadership, Cincinnati saw significant declines in shootings and overall double-digit reductions in both property and violent crimes.”

Neudigate also has extensive experience planning for and overseeing public safety operations for major events, from NFL games to headliner concerts and large festivals.

“I am deeply humbled and honored to be selected as next police chief for the City of Virginia Beach. The police department is well-regarded nationally and I know that comes from strong leadership, principled officers and experienced support staff who make it their mission to serve the community effectively and professionally,” said Neudigate.

“I look forward to joining the dynamic team there. We will build on the legacy and continue to make advancements that will best serve the citizens of this wonderful community.”

Neudigate replaces James A. Cervera who retired at the end of April after nearly 42 years with the department. Cervera was required to retire by age 65 under city code.

The City of Virginia Beach posted the position for hire two weeks before Cervera’s retirement stating that candidates “must be highly innovative, collaborative, visionary and empathetic with experience in leading and managing large, complex operations,”

The position pays up to $166,900.

Neudigate will lead a full-service police agency with about 1,059 sworn and non-sworn personnel. The department also has 12 captains 26 lieutenants and 94 sergeants.

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