New police chief announced

Published 2:07 pm Friday, May 15, 2009

A deputy chief in the Newport News Police Department has been announced as Suffolk’s new chief of police.

Thomas E. Bennett will begin work June 15, according to a city press release.

“I consider it an honor and privilege to have been selected to lead such an outstanding law enforcement agency,” Bennett said. “I am looking forward to working with the members of our law enforcement team, our citizens and our city leaders to continue Suffolk’s legacy of opportunity, security and vitality. Suffolk’s future is very bright and I am excited about my opportunity to play a role in its continued development,” Bennett added.

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Bennett began his law enforcement career in Newport News in 1984 as an auxiliary officer, and worked his way through the ranks to become deputy chief in 2005. He has served on several different special units and task forces.

Bennett lived in Suffolk during part of his childhood, as well as from 1996-2003. His mother currently lives in Suffolk. Bennett and his wife, Diana, have three children: Rebecca, Emily and Matthew.

The city began a nationwide search for a new police chief in November, when former chief William Freeman announced his retirement. Thomas Townsend, a former Hampton police chief, has filled the post in the interim.