LMPD Chief Steve Conrad responds to calls for his resignation - WDRB 41 Louisville News

LMPD Chief Steve Conrad responds to calls for his resignation

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LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WDRB) – Louisville Metro Police Chief Steve Conrad says he wants to keep his job for as long as he can in spite of calls from elected officials for him to resign.

Last Thursday, Republican Councilwoman Angela Leet said Conrad should resign amid a scandal involving allegations of a cover up in LMPD’s now defunct Explorer Program, as well as a rising homicide rate.

During a meeting of the Louisville Metro Council Public Safety committee on Wednesday, Leet questioned Conrad on manpower and whether the city had enough officers. Conrad refused to answer and instead referred to Mayor Greg Fischer’s budget proposal which will happen this Thursday.

“Chief Conrad was not forthcoming with responses to several council members’ questions and that kind of was a tipping point,” Leet said last week.

On Tuesday, Conrad responded to those calls for his resignation.

“We have some serious issues with crime in our community,” Conrad said. “What is most important is that we're all working together and doing our best to address those crimes.”

Meanwhile, Mayor Greg Fischer has said Leet’s call for Conrad’s resignation is “insulting.”

“We've got good, hardworking people at LMPD,” Fischer said in support of Conrad on Tuesday. “To think that one person is going to effect the whole system is really simplistic. Crime is much more difficult than that.”

Councilman David James, a democrat, says he isn't ready to ask for the Chief's resignation, but as chairman of the Public Safety Committee, he has heard complaints about the chief from fellow council members. 

James says Metro Council was asked to give Chief Conrad six months for his reorganization plan within the police department to take place. That six months will be up in May -- at which time the chief will be asked to give an update. 

"He [Chief Conrad] said at that time the measure of success would be if homicides were up or if homicides were down," James said. 

So far in 2017 there have been more homicides than there were in 2016 during the same time.

In December, the Louisville Fraternal Order of Police overwhelmingly issued a no-confidence vote in Conrad.

"The union has a right to voice their opinion, but any leader will tell you that leadership is about doing the right thing at the right time, rather than the popular thing," Chief Conrad said following that vote. 

Conrad echoed that sentiment on Tuesday and said that recent talks between himself and the Mayor have centered on the community.

“We've had many conversations over the past week,” Conrad said. “We talk regularly. Our focus isn't so much about my future as it is about the future of my community.”

Conrad said he is "committed to doing that work for as long as I am able to do it."

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