first_imgLONGVIEW — Kelso Police Chief Andy Hamilton announced his retirement Tuesday, effective immediately, less than a week after City Manager Steve Taylor announced his retirement in June.Captain Darr Kirk was appointed as the interim police chief, as of 5 p.m. Tuesday.Hamilton told The Daily News on Tuesday that he has been eligible for retirement for three years, and has been thinking about it for almost as long, but Taylor’s announcement Thursday that he was resigning to work for Cowlitz PUD prompted Hamilton to also consider leaving.In a press release Tuesday, Hamilton said, “Based on current events over the last couple weeks, I’ve discussed with my wife future plans and realize that now would be a great time for me to retire.”Hamilton, 55, said “there’s nothing negative” about the decision, which he said was reached amicably within the city.“Everything is great between me and the city, and the department and the city manager,” he said in an interview.Hamilton started with KPD in 1987 after two years as a reserve police officer. Over the next 32 years, Hamilton worked as a patrol officer, detective, sergeant, captain, member of the Joseph Kondro homicide task force and the Narcotics Task Force, and as the leader of a number of community policing projects, according to a press release.For his work with the Safe Kids Coalition, Hamilton received the Governor’s Award from Gov. Gary Locke and traveled to Washington D.C. to visit the White House. He returned to the White House years later for his work with the 21st Century Policing Model.last_img

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