The Portsmouth chapter of the Fraternal Order of Police (FOP) is making its opinion known about a couple of hot-button issues related to law enforcement in the area. Lodge #33 has spoken out about the preferred candidates for both Scioto County Sheriff and a new Portsmouth Chief of Police.
Sheriff Marty Donini has opted not to run for re-election leaving the field wide open. Accusations have flown between candidates about alleged FOP endorsements and the local FOP is making its preferred candidate perfectly clear: nobody.
The FOP emphatically states that it is choosing to remain neutral during the primary election and will not make any endorsements until after the primary elections are over.
When it comes to the Portsmouth Chief of Police, the FOP is willing to state a preference, though they aren’t picking any particular person.
FOP #33 says their organization conducted a vote of all members as to whether they wanted a new chief chosen from within the ranks or if they thought the position should be filled by an outside candidate. The choice was clear. Officers went with picking a new police chief from within the department.
FOP #33 says filling the position from within will reduce grievances and help boost morale. Lodge president Nickolas J. Shepherd said, “By filling the position from within the department, this will show the younger officers that with enough hard work, integrity, and professionalism, they can move up the ranks at the department and even achieve the rank of Chief.”
He went on to say that filling the position from outside the department could have a potentially negative impact on the department due to bringing in a new person who wouldn’t understand the workings of the department.
Debby Brewster is currently the acting Portsmouth Police Chief.