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Mississippi city hires police chief, assistant chief

June 22, 2021 GMT

SALTILLO, Miss. (AP) — A city in north Mississippi has put new leadership in place for its police department, about a month after the previous chief resigned and the assistant chief retired.

The Saltillo Board of Aldermen on Monday hired Daniel McKinney as the city’s new police chief and Jeff Brown as assistant chief, The Northeast Mississippi Daily Journal reported.

McKinney brings more than two decades of law enforcement experience to the post. He joined the Tupelo Police Department in 1998 and worked his way up to the rank of sergeant, overseeing the Special Operations Group and the K-9 unit. He left Tupelo Police in November.

When Saltillo Police Chief Grant Bailey resigned in mid-May for unspecified personal reasons, McKinney said he knew the time was right for him to return to law enforcement.

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“I have lived in and around Saltillo for many years,” McKinney said. “I thought it would be a good opportunity to help Saltillo as it moves forward.”

McKinney said his more than 22 years of experience will serve him well as Saltillo’s chief. He has been a patrol officer; a member of the SWAT team; a detective and an instructor at the police academy, according to the newspaper report. In his supervisory roles, he also has dealt with city budgets.

McKinney will be assisted in leading the roughly 20-person department by Brown, who currently works for the Lee County Sheriff’s Office.

“I have known him for a little while since he got to the area,” McKinney. “He’s got extensive military experience. He is very motivated and organized, which will be really beneficial to running the department.”

Outgoing Saltillo Mayor Rex Smith said Brown has also worked for civilian security in the Middle East as well as the Fairfax County Police Department in Virginia.

About a dozen people applied for the posts. Over a roughly two week period, the board cut the candidates to McKinney and Brown and offered each a position with the department.