Atlanta’s police chief will retire at the end of the year after 35 years on the department, six of those as chief.
Atlanta Mayor Kasim Reed announced Chief George Turner’s retirement on Wednesday.
“Since his appointment as Police Chief six years ago, George Turner has served as a vital member of my cabinet,” Reed said in a news release. “Under his leadership, we have made significant progress toward our goal of making Atlanta one of the safest large cities in America.”
Reed will name a replacement for Turner today.
Turner served as the 23rd chief of police for the city. According to the release, Atlanta has experienced a 27 percent reduction in crime since 2009; the lowest level in over four decades.
Since Turner became chief, the APD created eight new units and programs to tackle violent crime including the Atlanta Proactive Enforcement Interaction unit, domestic violence unit, code enforcement section, community liaison unit, path force unit, graffiti taskforce and juvenile offender program.
APD has also invested in over 70 new patrol cars and three new precincts.
In the last few years, the department has also struggled to hire new recruits and has seen a sharp decrease in applications. In 2011, the department received 5,064 applications compared to 3,106 applications in 2015.
The police department graduated 175 new police officer in 2012 compared to 119 in 2015.