DPD Chief James Craig not a certified police officer - DC News FOX 5 DC WTTG

DPD Chief James Craig not a certified police officer

Posted: Updated:

"One suspect jumped out and began running towards me." That's how Detroit Police Chief James Craig recalls an incident this past week in which he believes he was almost carjacked. "As soon as I saw the suspect running up to the car I just accelerated out of harm's way. Then, candidly, I got angry. I got angry, I just can't believe what just was about to happen. So here I'm fighting carjacking ... and I'm gonna get carjacked," he laughs.

But some people are critical, asking why didn't the chief pursue and arrest the men?

One answer that's coming out now is that the chief is not a police officer - he does not have police officer certification. He did back in the day with DPD when he started his career, but that certification has since lapsed.

"You don't want a police chief that when you come up to him, and need someone arrested or some help, say, 'I'm sorry I can't do it,'" says David Malhalab. He is a retired sergeant who served DPD for 23 years. He believes a police chief should be certified. "This is a city with one of the most violent crime statistics in the nation, and you want your police chief to be certified; you want him to be able to make arrests; you want him to be able to carry a gun."

The Detroit city charter does not require, or mandate, that the chief be a certified police officer. The Detroit board of police commissioners interviewed Craig before he was hired. Board member Jessica Taylor tell Fox 2's Ron Savage the board knew he was not a certified officer.

Detroit has had several chiefs who were not certified officers over the years, such as Chief Jerry Oliver. He took the state test and failed.

Craig was certified after he graduated from the Detroit Police Academy, but when he moved out of state the certification expired.

Malhalab says the chief should make it a priority to renew his certification, and he points out the attempted carjacking as an example. "If he thought he was the subject of a carjacking, if he wasn't in a position where he was safe then he should've gotten [in] one and then called for backup. I mean, he's the chief of police. Every police officer in the city would've responded from every far corners of the city if the chief called for help," Malhalab says.

Emergency Manager Kevyn Orr hired Craig.

Orr's office released this statement:

"Chief Craig is a decorated law enforcement officer with more than 30 years on the job. He's completely qualified to be chief in Detroit."
-Bill Nowling, a spokesperson for Kevyn Orr

  • Local NewsLocal NewsMore>>

  • Reward offered for info on who killed father of six in his driveway

    Reward offered for info on who killed father of six in his driveway

    Wednesday, July 30 2014 5:16 PM EDT2014-07-30 21:16:49 GMT
    A Detroit businessman and father of six, is gunned down in front of his own home.Tonight, his grieving family is demanding justice for Jacob Fry-Hooper, who was murdered in June.He was heading home from his brother's house on the night he was killed.Hooper had just pulled into his driveway. But as he was getting out of the car, someone fired several shots, killing him.Crime Stoppers is offering a $2,500 reward for tips that can lead to an arrest. To help, call 1-800-SPEAK-UP. Tipsters can rem...
    A Detroit businessman and father of six, is gunned down in front of his own home.Tonight, his grieving family is demanding justice for Jacob Fry-Hooper, who was murdered in June.He was heading home from his brother's house on the night he was killed.Hooper had just pulled into his driveway. But as he was getting out of the car, someone fired several shots, killing him.Crime Stoppers is offering a $2,500 reward for tips that can lead to an arrest. To help, call 1-800-SPEAK-UP. Tipsters can rem...
  • LIVE STREAM: Trench collapse in Pittsfield Township

    LIVE STREAM: Trench collapse in Pittsfield Township

    Wednesday, July 30 2014 4:44 PM EDT2014-07-30 20:44:25 GMT
    Emergency crews are at the scene of an apparent trench collapse in Pittsfield Township.
    Emergency crews are at the scene of an apparent trench collapse in Pittsfield Township.
  • Michigan man mocked on Instagram by Shaquille O'Neal, celebrities files lawsuit

    Michigan man mocked on Instagram by Shaquille O'Neal, celebrities files lawsuit

    Wednesday, July 30 2014 4:39 PM EDT2014-07-30 20:39:08 GMT
    Jahmel Binion filed a lawsuit in Macomb County court today.Jahmel Binion filed a lawsuit in Macomb County court today.
    They said they were sorry -- but it's not enough.The local man -- who was mocked for his appearance on Instagram by Shaquille O'Neal and other celebrities is now suing. Jahmel Binion filed a lawsuit in a Macomb County court today.Binion claims that O'Neal, NBA player Trey Burke and rapper Waka Flocka Flame caused him emotional distress when they made fun of him on social media earlier this year.Binion was born with a rare genetic condition that affects his physical appearance.The lawsuit also...
    They said they were sorry -- but it's not enough.The local man -- who was mocked for his appearance on Instagram by Shaquille O'Neal and other celebrities is now suing. Jahmel Binion filed a lawsuit in a Macomb County court today.Binion claims that O'Neal, NBA player Trey Burke and rapper Waka Flocka Flame caused him emotional distress when they made fun of him on social media earlier this year.Binion was born with a rare genetic condition that affects his physical appearance.The lawsuit also...
  • Download the FOX 2 Apps


  • FOX 2 News Five-Day Forecast
  • Ron SavageRon SavageMore>>

  • Sunday's storm captured by Fox 2 viewers

    Sunday's storm captured by Fox 2 viewers

    Sunday, July 27 2014 11:48 PM EDT2014-07-28 03:48:38 GMT
    We have more video of the storm and storm damage from across southeast Michigan. It's Fox 2 viewer pics and video that you sent to us.
    We have more video of the storm and storm damage from across southeast Michigan. It's Fox 2 viewer pics and video that you sent to us.
  • Livonia man dies after 2 dogs attack him

    Livonia man dies after 2 dogs attack him

    Saturday, July 26 2014 9:48 PM EDT2014-07-27 01:48:03 GMT
    A 46-year-old Livonia man was killed Wednesday evening after he was attacked by two dogs while jogging in Metamora.
    A 46-year-old Livonia man was killed Wednesday evening after he was attacked by two dogs while jogging in Metamora.
  • FBI joins the search for Armada teen's killer

    FBI joins the search for Armada teen's killer

    Friday, July 25 2014 11:08 PM EDT2014-07-26 03:08:38 GMT
    The FBI has joined the investigation team searching for the killer of a 14-year-old Armada girl, April Millsap.
    The FBI has joined the investigation team searching for the killer of a 14-year-old Armada girl, April Millsap. Authorities also say they are now looking for a small motorcycle in addition to the gray, dented van seen in the area.
Powered by WorldNow

WTTG FOX 5 & myfoxdc
5151 Wisconsin Ave. NW
Washington, DC 20016
Main Number: (202) 244-5151
Newsroom: (202) 895-3000
fox5tips@wttg.com

Didn't find what you were looking for?
All content © Copyright 2000 - 2014 Fox Television Stations, Inc. and Worldnow. All Rights Reserved.
Privacy Policy | Terms of Service | Ad Choices