After 40 years in law enforcement, David Grisham has stepped down as New Albany Police Chief effective June 30, 2013. Chris Robertson is replacing Grisham as police chief.
Grisham started his career as a deputy at the Union County Sheriff’s Department in 1973, then in 1981, he continued his career at the New Albany Police Department. During his time at the NAPD, he was elected eight times as police chief.
He said he will miss dealing with and getting to know the people in the community as well as working with his fellow officers and colleagues at the department.
Grisham said that after this many years, the biggest change in the department are the number of the employees, which has doubled in size, as well as technological differences.
“Now we have computers in the police cars, digital records, iPads, and more. Everything used to be done solely with pen and paper. Technology has made a big difference in this profession,” said Grisham.
In addition to technological changes, the popularity of specific drugs has changed.
He said, “In the past, marijuana and cocaine were the big drugs. Now, methamphetamines and prescription drugs are more popular. I would say that the biggest drugs on the streets of New Albany are prescription drugs. In the 1970s and 1980s, bootlegging was a big problem and also in the 1980s, most of the crime was theft-related with small and big burglaries. Now, identity theft is a huge crime and we have seen it every day with debit cards, credit cards, and more. The big crime with identity theft used to be forged checks.”
He said that the biggest cases he has seen over the past 32 years have been the big, high profile murder cases, such as the David Pernell case, the Chico Foote, case, the Amanda Price case, and the shooting at the Piper Impact factory.
Grisham said that he hoped that the city will eventually build a new police station so there is more room for the officers and investigators.
“I decided in the 11th grade that I wanted to go into a law enforcement. An agent from the FBI came to talk to our class and I knew from then on what I wanted to go into as a profession,” said Grisham.
“I have been in law enforcement for 40 years and I thought it was time for me to move on. I have really enjoyed my job here in New Albany and I plan to get more involved with the community and help out in a community that has given so much to me and my family and have supported us for so many years. I will miss the camaraderie of the guys here and I will miss being around the general public,” said Grisham. “I am so grateful to the people of New Albany and the support they have given me over the years. I have been really blessed to have been elected eight times, four of those times without opposition. I am a very lucky and happy person and have been blessed.”
He said that he has no immediate plans for his retirement. Grisham said that he plans to be outdoors and hunting and fishing, as well as hang out with his family.
He has a wife of 39 years, Charlotte, three daughters, Ginger Henry, Katy Anna Richardson, and Carly Grisham, and four grandchildren.