CMPD Chief Kerr Putney Announces He Is Not Retiring On January 1
Charlotte-Mecklenburg Police Department’s Chief Kerr Putney says he will not retire on January 1, 2020 as originally planned.
Putney’s retirement announcement came under scrutiny because the State Treasurer of North Carolina said his retirement plan was not allowed under state law.
Putney announced in October that he planned to retire on January 1, 2020 but would return to duty two months later to work through the Republican National Convention.
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ORIGINAL STORY (Posted Nov. 25th, 2019):
CHARLOTTE, NC – Too often in 2019, Charlotte families have had to bury their loved ones because of violence.
“Young people are becoming more brazen and less able to resolve a conflict by talking through it instead of shooting it out,” said CMPD Chief Kerr Putney.
So far this year 98 people have been killed in Charlotte, that’s up from 51 homicides at this point last year.
Putney speaking with reporters today about the cities surging murder rate.
“I think we’re just too short-sighted as a city when it comes to violent crime and how were should attack it,” said Putney.
He continued, saying crime reaction is not the issue. CMPD’S current homicide clearance rate is 80%. Compared to the national average of 60 %. The department has also pulled 10% more guns off the street so far this year.
Putney says all of this work is being done with a shortage of about 160 officers.
“We’re strategically going after the right people,” said Putney.
The chief says crime prevention needs to be a focus moving forward. He challenged city and county leaders to use taxpayer dollars in a more beneficial way.
“I think we can do better investing in programs that work to prevent this instead of just constantly trying to react to it,” said Putney.
He won’t be around forever to push the plan with his current retirement status in limbo.
“In the hands of the state. We’ll see,” said Putney with a shrug.
The city’s top cop is nearing his retirement at the end of the year. The state is looking into whether he can legally be hired back by the department to oversee the Republican National Convention in August. Putney says he plans to be involved one way or another.
“What they can’t keep me from doing is at least volunteering to help my city,” said Putney, “I can at least do that.”
During Monday’s conversation, Putney also addressed the reinstatement of officer Wende Kerl. She shot and killed Danquirs Franklin outside of a Burger King seven months ago.
She is now back on full duty and was not formally disciplined by CMPD. Putney said she was justified in the shooting and did not break any department policies or procedures.