Brier police chief to retire

Updated June 21 with statement from Brier Police Chief

Brier Police Chief Mike Catlett, who has been heading up the police department since May 2014, has announced he will be retiring.

Catlett has been with the department since 2013, when he started as a patrol officer. He became the interim chief of police in May 2014, and was then selected as the permanent police chief in January 2015.

“I would first like to thank the men and women of the Brier Police Department for their dedication and service,” Catlett said. “I have worked in the law enforcement profession for over 20 years and for the last eight and half years I have had the honor and privilege to serve the Brier community.” Catlett added his appreciation for “all of my Snohomish County law enforcement colleagues for their support, guidance and leadership as well. ”

Brier Mayor Dale Kaemingk said June 17 that given Catlett’s retirement plans, he will be putting together an interim plan for Brier Police Department supervisory services. The upcoming change in leadership will require the City of Brier to reach out to other local agencies for assistance while it conducts the search for a new police chief.

“This temporary support will provide the necessary supervision and back up for our own City of Brier police officers and other law enforcement professionals who serve here,” Kaemingk said in statement. “As always, our goal is to continue to provide a fast and effective response for all emergency police services in our community.”

He noted that cooperation between jurisdictions isn’t new, as “mutual aid” agreements between local agencies have been around for many years.  Neighboring cities and other emergency organizations “depend on each other often for support and cooperation, as we all seek to serve our citizens well in south Snohomish County,” he said.

“We are hopeful that this temporary change in leadership will be brief and not interrupt the excellent police service that we all appreciate and depend on,” Kaemingk added. “The mayor in coordination with the entire Brier City Council and city staff will be actively working to fill this important leadership position.”

When fully staffed, the Brier Police Department is comprised of six sworn officers and a records supervisor. It offers a full range of police services including animal control, crime prevention, fingerprinting, patrol and investigations and a traffic violations bureau.

It currently has three officers plus the chief, who “does cover patrol shifts when shorthanded,” City Clerk Paula Swisher said in an email,

“Just like all agencies, it is hard to fill positions currently with so many officers taking early retirements or choosing to move to other professions,” she added. “We still have 24/7 coverage and have been actively trying to recruit officers.”

Brier has a population of approximately 6,300 people and covers an area of 2.13 square miles.

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