After successfully completing requirements to become certified as an Arizona Peace Officer—requirements that included scaling a 6-foot fence, twice—Chris Magnus was sworn in as Tucson’s Chief of Police Wednesday at a ceremony at the Westside Police Service Center.
Chief Magnus previously served as Chief of Police in Fargo, North Dakota and, more recently, in Richmond, California. In both positions, he emphasized community policing, with officers assigned to patrol specific neighborhoods—giving them, and the people in those neighborhoods, the chance to get to know each other. During his time in Richmond, both violent crime and property crime dropped to their lowest levels in more than a decade.
While he was familiarizing himself with Arizona laws and preparing to meet physical requirements for certification in Arizona, Chief Magnus was also tasked with reducing his department’s budget. Working with his command staff, Chief Magnus presented a proposal to increase the number of officers on patrol, invest in vehicle and equipment upgrades, and still save the city $7.1 million—largely by eliminating positions that had been budgeted but not filled.