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New Bloomington Police Chief Takes Over

The search continued for nearly seven months before the city finally named a successor in September. On Monday, Brendan Heffner began work in Bloomington.
BLOOMINGTON - In January, Bloomington said good bye to its old police chief, who retired and moved to Missouri.

The search continued for nearly seven months before the city finally named a successor in September. On Monday, Brendan Heffner began work in Bloomington.

"They're ready for me to get to work," said Heffner. "Obviously, I have to be brought up to speed on things. So, some of these issues are the assistant chiefs basically still running things until I can get up to speed,"

For months, Bloomington operated with interim chiefs, but now department officials say they're ready for some stability.

"It's good that we can finally move forward, as to getting some permanent fixtures and having an idea what our structure is going to be going forward is, instead of wondering if it's all going to change in the next month or two," said Clay Wheeler, assistant chief for the Bloomington Police Department.

On Monday, he met community leaders, who are excited to see him start,

"He knows our community, but he's also worked for the Illinois State police and he's worked for the Normal Police Department. So, bringing in new ideas will hopefully invigorate our department and our city," said Mayor Tari Renner.

"With him being from the area gave us a unique advantage of many people, having been able to work with him or at least encounter him in one way or another. So, I think it was optimistic. It was a good response," said Ken Bays, assistant chief for Bloomington.

And Heffner says he's ready to do all he can to make Bloomington a safer community.

"I don't care what kind of job I have, whether I was at state farm, whether I was here, or at another department, even when things are going well, you can tweak things and they can be better," said Heffner.

Heffner had spent the last year and a half working for State Farm as a safety and security specialist. His last day at the company was Friday.

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