DPD Chief James Craig not a certified police officer - New York News

DPD Chief James Craig not a certified police officer

Posted: Updated:

"One suspect jumped out and began running towards me." That's how Detroit Police Chief James Craig recalls an incident this past week in which he believes he was almost carjacked. "As soon as I saw the suspect running up to the car I just accelerated out of harm's way. Then, candidly, I got angry. I got angry, I just can't believe what just was about to happen. So here I'm fighting carjacking ... and I'm gonna get carjacked," he laughs.

But some people are critical, asking why didn't the chief pursue and arrest the men?

One answer that's coming out now is that the chief is not a police officer - he does not have police officer certification. He did back in the day with DPD when he started his career, but that certification has since lapsed.

"You don't want a police chief that when you come up to him, and need someone arrested or some help, say, 'I'm sorry I can't do it,'" says David Malhalab. He is a retired sergeant who served DPD for 23 years. He believes a police chief should be certified. "This is a city with one of the most violent crime statistics in the nation, and you want your police chief to be certified; you want him to be able to make arrests; you want him to be able to carry a gun."

The Detroit city charter does not require, or mandate, that the chief be a certified police officer. The Detroit board of police commissioners interviewed Craig before he was hired. Board member Jessica Taylor tell Fox 2's Ron Savage the board knew he was not a certified officer.

Detroit has had several chiefs who were not certified officers over the years, such as Chief Jerry Oliver. He took the state test and failed.

Craig was certified after he graduated from the Detroit Police Academy, but when he moved out of state the certification expired.

Malhalab says the chief should make it a priority to renew his certification, and he points out the attempted carjacking as an example. "If he thought he was the subject of a carjacking, if he wasn't in a position where he was safe then he should've gotten [in] one and then called for backup. I mean, he's the chief of police. Every police officer in the city would've responded from every far corners of the city if the chief called for help," Malhalab says.

Emergency Manager Kevyn Orr hired Craig.

Orr's office released this statement:

"Chief Craig is a decorated law enforcement officer with more than 30 years on the job. He's completely qualified to be chief in Detroit."
-Bill Nowling, a spokesperson for Kevyn Orr

  • Download the FOX 2 Apps


  • FOX 2 News Five-Day Forecast
  • Local NewsLocal NewsMore>>

  • Suffolk County jail warden is highest-paid muni worker in NY

    Suffolk County jail warden is highest-paid muni worker in NY

    Thursday, July 24 2014 6:48 PM EDT2014-07-24 22:48:14 GMT
    New York State NewsNew York State News
    The Empire Center for Public Policy reports 1,803 local government employees outside of New York City have been paid more than Gov. Andrew Cuomo's $179,000 salary in the past year. The report from the fiscally conservative group for the year ending March 31 shows 47 of the 50 highest-paid municipal employees working for police departments or sheriff's offices and each taking home more than $250,000.
    The Empire Center for Public Policy reports 1,803 local government employees outside of New York City have been paid more than Gov. Andrew Cuomo's $179,000 salary in the past year. The report from the fiscally conservative group for the year ending March 31 shows 47 of the 50 highest-paid municipal employees working for police departments or sheriff's offices and each taking home more than $250,000.
  • Manhattan nursery school's sanitizing machine keeps air clean

    Manhattan nursery school's sanitizing machine keeps air clean

    Thursday, July 24 2014 6:47 PM EDT2014-07-24 22:47:17 GMT
    All of us feel the same way about "cooties": Eww. At the Goddard School on the Upper West Side, a high-tech machine is keeping "cooties" out of the classroom. "This is the latest and then most effective sanitization method available today," says Bill Swan, the owner of the Goddard School. He purchased the ZONO Sanitech for his school about six months ago. The machine is the size of a double refrigerator and uses oxygen to kill viruses and bacteria.
    All of us feel the same way about "cooties": Eww. At the Goddard School on the Upper West Side, a high-tech machine is keeping "cooties" out of the classroom. "This is the latest and then most effective sanitization method available today," says Bill Swan, the owner of the Goddard School. He purchased the ZONO Sanitech for his school about six months ago. The machine is the size of a double refrigerator and uses oxygen to kill viruses and bacteria.
  • NYC's pickup basketball games moving indoors

    NYC's pickup basketball games moving indoors

    Thursday, July 24 2014 5:54 PM EDT2014-07-24 21:54:18 GMT
    Believe it or not this, some say New York's outdoor basketball courts are a dying entity. Even Rucker Park in Harlem -- where Dr. J and countless others honed their skills -- used to be standing room only all times of the day. Now there's plenty of room to stand on most days.Basketball programs like one at Chelsea Piers are gaining popularity. That means the place to hoop it up for many appears to be indoors.
    Believe it or not this, some say New York's outdoor basketball courts are a dying entity. Even Rucker Park in Harlem -- where Dr. J and countless others honed their skills -- used to be standing room only all times of the day. Now there's plenty of room to stand on most days.Basketball programs like one at Chelsea Piers are gaining popularity. That means the place to hoop it up for many appears to be indoors.
  • Ron SavageRon SavageMore>>

  • Neighbors want neglected Detroit Rogell Golf Course cleaned up

    Neighbors want neglected Detroit Rogell Golf Course cleaned up

    Thursday, July 24 2014 10:19 AM EDT2014-07-24 14:19:43 GMT
    One of Detroit's most popular sports attractions is now a grown over weedbed. Neighbors say their favorite golf course has become an eyesore.
    One of Detroit's most popular sports attractions is now a grown over weedbed. Neighbors say their favorite golf course has become an eyesore.
  • Demonstrators remember activist Charity Hicks

    Demonstrators remember activist Charity Hicks

    Demonstrators remember activist Charity Hicks

    Sunday, July 20 2014 2:11 PM EDT2014-07-20 18:11:28 GMT
    The victim of a hit and run accident in Manhattan six weeks ago has died. Charity Hicks had been in a coma since being hit by a car at a bus stop on 10th Avenue May 31st. Hicks was a community activist from Detroit who helped start the anti-water shut off movement.
    The victim of a hit and run accident in Manhattan six weeks ago has died. Charity Hicks had been in a coma since being hit by a car at a bus stop on 10th Avenue May 31st. Hicks was a community activist from Detroit who helped start the anti-water shut off movement.
  • Detroit water department warns against illegal hookups amid shutoffs

    Detroit water department warns against illegal hookups amid shutoffs

    Thursday, July 17 2014 10:02 PM EDT2014-07-18 02:02:52 GMT
    Detroit water customers who are struggling to pay the water bill are finding some help - but it's illegal. Social media sites are now surfacing instructing people how to steal water. 
    Detroit water customers who are struggling to pay the water bill are finding some help - but it's illegal. Social media sites are now surfacing instructing people how to steal water. 
Powered by WorldNow
Didn't find what you were looking for?
All content © Copyright 2000 - 2014 Fox Television Stations, Inc. and Worldnow. All Rights Reserved.
Privacy Policy | Terms of Service | Ad Choices