Former MPD Chief Harden now interim Escalon chief
04/16/2014 12:54 PM
04/16/2014 5:08 PM
Former Modesto Police Chief Mike Harden has come out of retirement to serve as the interim police chief in Escalon.
The city has been without a permanent chief since August 2012, when Jim Shaw retired and Sgt. Milt Medeiros filled in on an interim basis.
Escalon City Manager Tammy Alcantor said Medeiros never intended to pursue the position, so the city started a recruiting process in October.
“We didn’t hire a service to help us. We did mostly everything in-house, with the exception of advertising,” she said.
With few qualified applicants, Alcantor said, the filing date had to be extended. But the city eventually found a candidate, who was offered the job in February.
The new chief was expected to begin this month but, Alcantor said, “He accepted the position but called me a couple (of) days later and had to decline it for personal reasons.”
Harden had served on the interview panel, so Alcantor asked him if he would step in during a second round of recruitment. Harden accepted and began work at the end of March. He’s expected to fill in at least until August. He will be paid $50 an hour for his work.
Harden said that in his interim role, he is evaluating policies and assisting with the upcoming budget. “You have got to strike a balance between doing too much and not doing enough,” he said. “You are constantly evaluating what can be addressed today, what can be addressed in 30 days and what can be addressed in 60 days.”
Editor's Choice Videos
Join the Discussion
The Modesto Bee is pleased to provide this opportunity to share information, experiences and observations about what's in the news. Some of the comments may be reprinted elsewhere on the site or in the newspaper. We encourage lively, open debate on the issues of the day, and ask that you refrain from profanity, hate speech, personal comments and remarks that are off point. Thank you for taking the time to offer your thoughts.