Belvery Starts As Lexington's Police Chief

Published 08/11 2014 09:25PM

Updated 08/11 2014 10:55PM

LEXINGTON - The City of Lexington is settling into a new era of policing. Monday was new chief Dave Belvery's first day in charge of the department that had been without a leader for nearly two months.

Belvery has spent more than two decades in law enforcement, but he's spent it mostly in metropolitan areas, including Creve Coeur, before coming to Lexington.

"I believe when it's a smaller town, you have a more intimate relationship with the people in the town,” said Belvery.

Now, his latest challenge is taking over a police department that's been searching for steady leadership, since former chief Dave Schneider resigned in June.

"Never met the former chief, but I understand he was a very well-liked man, good officer. But the board wanted, it appeared to move in a different direction,” said Belvery.

As he checks the equipment, he's working on creating a policy and procedure manual for his staff.

"I would like to have that in place before bringing the officers back, so everybody starts with a clean slate,” explained Belvery. “This is the policies and procedures for the department. This is how we're going to handle business.”

One of Belvery's immediate goals is to get his part-timers back on the job as soon as he can, and that could include even adding one more to the staff

"When are they best suited to be out on the street? Do we have a higher likelihood of crime or a lot of activity?” said Belvery.

In the meantime, the McLean County Sheriff's Department has a contract in place to continue providing police coverage for Lexington until Sept. 23.

Belvery says it'll be important to lean on the sheriff's department and his staff who are familiar with the area, until he finds a comfort level in town.

"I’d like to get them out and get our guys back to work,” said Belvery.

Belvery is still in the process of moving to Lexington. He says he and Sheriff Mike Emery will work closely on cases involving Lexington at the start.


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