GREENE: Buchanan is Carrollton’s new Police Chief
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By Carmen Ensinger
Following the abrupt retirement of Carrollton Police Chief Mike McCartney on Jan. 27, the Mayor and City Council have appointed Officer Jimmy Buchanan as the new Carrollton Chief of Police.
Buchanan was appointed by a unanimous vote of the board at a special meeting held on Jan. 25.
Carrollton Mayor Mike Snyder said appointing a new police chief wasn’t something he was looking to do during his tenure in office.
“Three weeks ago, Mac (McCartney) came in and told me that he was going to retire from the city and accept another employment opportunity that had arisen that was just too good to pass up,” Snyder said. “I hated to see him go and it wasn’t in my plan to see him go – at least not during my tenure, but I can’t blame him because it was too good an offer to pass up.”
Snyder said that McCartney was appointed as the Chief of Police on Nov. 1, 2020, and was going to be going to Principia College to work in security.
However, it didn’t leave the city much time to find his replacement.
“The one thing myself and the council were both in agreement on was that we wanted to promote someone from within our own department,” Snyder said. “We were not looking to hire someone from outside of the department, so that kind of narrowed our choices.”
The city employs five full time officers: Mike Lovel, Kenny Kallal, Aaron Mehrhoff, Jerritt Smith and Buchanan.
There are three positions within the city in which the Mayor is allowed to make an appointment – that of city treasurer, public works director and police chief. This appointment is made with “advice and consent” of the council.
If the council does not vote to approve the appointment, the mayor may still appoint the person to the position, but the appointment is only good for 30 days and the person must be voted on at the next meeting, and so on, and so on, until they are approved or a new appointment is made which is approved of by the council.
“There was a lot of discussion with the council and we talked about the entire department and Jimmy (Buchanan) had the unanimous support of the council,” Snyder said. “The council and I have a good relationship and everyone is kept informed and so he was appointed with the advice and consent of the council and I think we made the right decision.”
Buchanan, 34, from Hillview, is the only full-time officer who doesn’t live in Carrollton and is the second youngest officer. He became a part-time officer with the city in July of 2015 and became a full-time officer with the city in September of 2020. He has a total of 12 years of law enforcement experience.
“If you have someone qualified, you need to bump them up,” Snyder said. “And sometimes that is not the most senior guy. Seniority doesn’t add up to leadership – it just doesn’t. I may catch a little grief, but we are there to make those decisions and it wasn’t something that was made lightly. I have faith in him. He is a straight up, by the book, straight shooter and that is what I need in there. He is someone I can trust. It was a decision made by seven people – not just me.”