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Chief of Police isn’t a certified officer in Michigan

DETROIT, MI – When faced with an attempted carjacking of his unmarked squad car, Detroit Police Chief James Craig just drove away. As it turns out, there isn’t much that the police chief could have done.  Why? The chief of police is not a certified police officer in the state of Michigan.

Relaying his story to a crowd of about 50 people at a community meeting about Detroit’s carjacking problem, Mr. Craig explained that he “accelerated out of harm’s way,” rather than arresting the suspect.

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Because Mr. Craig is not certified as a police officer, he does not posses the same authority to detain suspects based on reasonable suspicion and make arrests based on probable cause.  Therefore, he is limited to making citizens arrests, which, under Michigan law, require a felony to have been committed.

According to the Michigan Commission on Law Enforcement Standards, Mr. Craig was sent paperwork for obtaining the certification in July, when his tenure began, but has thus far failed to return it.

This isn’t the first time Mr. Craig ran into troubles with obtaining state certification.  At his previous post as chief of police in Cincinnati, Mr. Craig made a request to be waived from taking the state officer certification tests. Although he was granted a waiver from the vast majority of the training requirements, Mr. Craig was not exempt from requirements relating specifically to Ohio law.

Rather than fulfilling these requirements, Mr. Craig filed a lawsuit arguing that the test was unfair to out-of-state chief candidates and that the amount of time he would have to devote to preparation would be better spent elsewhere.  Ultimately, he dropped the lawsuit after accepting the position in Detroit.

As of last week, there have been 582 carjackings in Detroit this year.

About The Author

Joe Trotter

Joe is the Executive Director of the Stonegait Institute, a nonprofit dedicated to fighting abuses of powers perpetrated by our leaders at all levels. He was Austin Petersen's campaign's Communications Director and formerly headed up the media department for a First Amendment nonprofit that deals with campaign finance related issues. He has a Bachelors of Science from Cornell University and has been published in National Review, the Washington Times, the Daily Caller, the Washington Examiner, and Frum Forum.

  • Patricia

    Either he takes the tests to certify him or he doesn’t belong in the position he is in. Is there a reason he doesn’t believe he needs to be qualified for the job? Detroit needs leadership in all areas and obviously this is not a good choice for police chief if he is not even willing to fill out paperwork to qualify himself for the job he already holds. Fire him and get somebody else!

  • Emily Ray Frisbie

    Isn’t car jacking a felony! He could have done a citizens arrest.

  • Henry Strzelecki

    He can’t pass the qualification test… But he got the job…He obviously doesn’t deserve…

  • amandaleane

    I wonder if he is unable to read. …

  • Thomas Albaugh

    And he is a Police Chief why……

  • dirtydog1776

    Time to file a lawsuit, but no time to take a class. Probably can’t read or write. Typical of Detroit.

  • Harry Largo

    The same city that had an illiterate School Board President, Otis Mathis. He was eventually fired for fondling himself in front of the superintendent.

  • Blake Harris

    Last I checked car jacking is a felony so… He just sounds like a pussy.

  • Bruce Walberg

    Just another day in the big Shity

  • Alex Morris

    that is because his old ass can’t pass the BLET physical requirements. we have the same issue with the chief in Charlotte, NC. it is an administrator position.

  • Stormtrooper

    Affirmative action…………..because it works!……..LOL

  • maddaddyssa

    Affirmative action in action. This is what happens when equality of RESULTS, not the best and brightest, is the primary criteria

  • TW

    Good luck Detroit. The folks in Cinci repeatedly made requests for the written exam to be taken. He dodged that test with numerous excuses and frivolous lawsuits an will do the same in Detroit. He has 3 chief’s positions since the last time he was a legal law enforcement officer, lol.