In an interview with Chief Turner from Bellevue, Wednesday afternoon, he stated how shocked and saddened the entire police department in Bellevue was to get the news of Chief Scott O’Brien’s firing from the Dayton Police force. “I am disappointed we can’t work together. He is a friend and colleague. You’ll never find anyone that is better administrator than Scott O’Brien. No one says anything bad about that guy. There aren’t many like him. I am going to miss him.”
Chief O’Brien was on the Dayton police force for 3 and a half years. Chief Turner said “You have to give someone a chance when they take this job. It takes a year just to be able to understand the framework of what you are working with, like the dynamics of the community. Scott did a good job in earning the trust of the community. He will end up in another agency, There is no doubt in my mind. It is a tough job, being the chief. You serve the community at will. You serve the mayor at will. We understand that going into this business the career span is only 4 or 5 years. A mayor gets elected and brings in his own chief and typically that either goes well or doesn’t go well.”
Chief Turner went on to comment on all of the great things Chief Scott O’Brien did for the community of Dayton as well as surrounding communities. Scott spearheaded the Operation Safe Harbor grant that the would have provided the river cities in Northern Kentucky with security cameras. “We don’t know where that stands now since he was the person in charge of that project.” Turner said. “Scott was also the committee chair for the Campbell County drug blitz in November 2014, where police forces from the Campbell County departments participated in major drug busts on local highways.” Chief Turner was referring to “Operation November Blitz” where 38 police cars from 14 departments, including Bellevue, blitzed the highways looking for potential heroin flow resulting in many arrests. Chief O’Brien also got the Dayton Police Department accredited.
Turner went on to say he is left with a lot of questions. “Who is coming in to fill Scott’s position and how will we work with the new Chief? Scott was a bridge builder and a communicator. He helped build the relationship we have with Dayton Police and did a tremendous amount of work to knock down the walls between Dayton and Bellevue. The new person coming into Scott’s job will have to quickly figure our what is going on with the Operation Safe Harbor Grant.
The Bellevue Dayton Sun had a scheduled interview today with Chief O’Brien and we were in the beginning stages of discussing the new App that Chief O’Brien had gotten for Dayton’s police department. It was scheduled to be introduced at the Neighborhood Watch meeting on next Monday. Dayton would have one of 3 cities in the nation to get this App. It would have allowed citizens to capture photos and videos of crimes and suspicious activity and send it directly to the police department. As Chief O’Brien was logging in to demonstrate how it worked, he was interrupted my City Manager, Michael Giffen. A few minutes later he notified us that the interview had to end. River City News posted the story of Chief O’Brien’s firing within 10 minutes of the end of our interview.
Former Mayor Ken Rankle reached out to Bellevue Dayton Sun for a comment. “Scott was one of the best cops Dayton has ever had. He was respected and was able to hire good police officers. He will be missed here.”