Candidate for WPD chief named to similar post in Texas, two finalists remain

Lubbock, Texas Assistant Police Chief Gregory Stevens

WICHITA, Kan. – One day after the announcement of the final three candidates for the Wichita Police chief, it appears one person is already out of the running.

Gregory Stevens was also a candidate to be the next police chief in Lubbock, Texas. Now, Stevens has been offered that job.

That leaves two candidates, Terri Moses and Joel Fitzgerald, Sr.

Fitzgerald is the current police chief in Allentown, Pennsylvania. He has 22 years experience in law enforcement.

Terri Moses is no stranger to Wichita. She is a former Wichita Police deputy chief, and served 32 years with WPD.

KSN sat down with Moses Friday to find out what her plans are if she gets the job.

KSN also reached out to Joel Fitzgerald, but he declined to talk at this time.

Moses, however, who left the department in 2013, outlined her plans if she is chosen for the position.

Moses left to take on the positon of executive director of public safety for Wichita Public Schools.
KSN asked Moses what she will do and possibly change if she is selected to be the next chief.

Moses said transparency is important to her.

“You can’t go in with a pre-conceived set of ideas, just like this process involves transparency, a big part of taking over a management position is listening,” said Moses.

A big topic of discussion for the past year has been the integration of body cameras into the department.
Moses says she was part of the pilot program that looked into the cameras four years ago.

“[I’ve] been a proponent of body cameras since we began looking at them,” said Moses. “As we researched them we saw value in them, and certainly it makes sense to use them within a police department.”

The other candidate, coming from outside the area, is Joel Fitzgerald, Sr., the current chief in Allentown, Pennsylvania, a town of about 120-thousand people.

Before his current position, he was the chief in Missouri City, Texas which is near Houston. Fitzgerald has had a career encompassing 23 years of police work.

When tabbed as the chief of Allentown back in 2013, Fitzgerald spoke on the importance of developing a healthy relationship between his department and the community.

“Building trust first and foremost with the members of the community, is of paramount importance,” said Fitzgerald. “You can’t underscore how much it means to have a community behind you.”

That’s a sentiment about community policing also echoed by Moses.

“It’s important for a police department and a community to work together as one,” said Moses.

KSN talked to several city leaders after we learned the search was down to two.

Mayor Jeff Longwell tells us that it speaks to the caliber of the finalists that one of them has already been chosen for the leadership role.

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