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Salem Police Capt. Jeff Dudley Named As Chief Bryant’s Successor

August 13, 2009 | Virginia News

Lt. Tim Guthrie Appointed Next Captain

When he began working for the Salem Police Department back in 1977, Jeff Dudley was a 19-year-old just thankful for an entry level position. Now 32 years later, he is Salem’s new Police Chief. The appointment to the Police Department’s top post was made by City Manager Kevin Boggess this afternoon and will take effect on November 1, 2009 when retiring Chief James R. Bryant steps down. “Filling the Chief of Police position is rarely an easy task, but in this case it may have been one of the easiest decisions I have had to make,” says Kevin Boggess, Salem City Manager. “Capt. Dudley has an excellent reputation both inside and outside the Police Department. He has worked in the Department for over 30 years and during that time he has built a relationship with the staff and community that makes him the perfect person to lead the Salem Police Department.” “I appreciate the confidence the City Manager and City Council have shown in me for this position,” says Dudley. “The Salem Police Department has very dedicated and qualified individuals working for it and this is a once in a lifetime opportunity to lead them. I cannot express in words how this opportunity feels.” Dudley is a Roanoke County native who graduated from Northside High School and picked up an Associate degree from Virginia Western before earning both his Bachelor’s and Master’s degrees from Radford University. He also is a graduate of the Virginia Forensic Academy and the FBI National Academy in Quantico. “I feel like I’ve grown up at the Police Department and having risen through the ranks, I know that the experiences I’ve had at each level will prove to be very beneficial to me as we move forward,” says Dudley. After spending a year as a dispatcher, Dudley was sworn in as a Police Officer in April of 1978 and assigned to the Patrol Division. In July of 1983, he moved to the detective division where he spent 6 years as a general investigator and crime scene technician. During this time he worked on two of Salem’s most high profile cases. He was involved in the Dennis West case where West was convicted of the brutal murder of his wife in their Salem home in 1988, and the case of Dennis Eaton, who went on a crime spree in 1989 killing Virginia State Trooper Jerry Hines in Rockbridge Co. along with 2 others in the Shenandoah valley and one in Salem where he was apprehended by Salem Police. In April of 1989, Dudley was promoted to the rank of Sergeant in the Services Division where he was instrumental in the development of Salem’s popular Camp D.A.R.E. He also served as a Sergeant and first line supervisor in the Patrol Division before rising to the rank of Lieutenant in January 1994. On November 1, 1995, he was appointed Deputy Chief of Police, a position he has held to this day. “I am very grateful for the support and words of encouragement I have received over the last week from members of the department and city staff and employees,” says Dudley. “I feel like the experiences I have had with former Chief Haskins for 18 years and with Chief Bryant for the last 14 years will prove to be invaluable as we move forward with the future of the department.” “Jeff Dudley is a very capable and knowledgeable individual who will do a tremendous job for the City of Salem,” says Chief Bryant. “It’s personally gratifying to know that he can step into this position.” Boggess and Dudley conferred with one another about the appointment of Salem’s new Deputy Chief and both are pleased to announce that Lt. Tim Guthrie will assume that role and rise to the rank of Captain on November 1st. Guthrie has been with the department since 1981 and during that stretch he has served as a Patrol and Traffic Officer, Narcotics and General Investigations Detective, Detective and Services Division Sergeant and the department’s Services Division Lieutenant, his current post. The William Fleming graduate holds a Bachelor of Science Degree in Administration of Justice and is currently attending Hollins University pursuing a Master’s Degree. Guthrie also is a graduate of the FBI National Academy. “Over the years I have worked with many people who have made this opportunity possible,” says Guthrie. “The guidance and support given to me by Chief Bryant and Captain Dudley will always be valued and respected not only by me, but by every member of the department. It is indeed a pleasure to serve the citizens of this great city.” A majority of the promotions that both Dudley and Guthrie received prior to this appointment took place when Harry Haskins was Salem’s Police Chief. “I am very proud of these two men and we’re very fortunate to have them in Salem,” says Haskins. “They are great leaders and I look forward to seeing their accomplishments. I’m so pleased with the City Manager’s decision.” “Salem has a reputation for outstanding leadership development, and Captain Dudley and Lt. Guthrie are examples of why that reputation is well deserved,” says Boggess.