Mayor Appoints New Police Chief Following Current Chief's Retirement

Mayor Kristen Brown will appoint Capt. Jon Rohde as Chief of the Columbus Police Department upon the retirement of Chief Jason Maddix effective May 20. Maddix is retiring from CPD to take a position as the North American Security Adviser for Cummins Inc.

Rohde is a 13-year veteran of CPD and has served as Administrative Captain on the department’s command staff for the past two years. As Administrative Captain he has overseen the department's training, detectives division, narcotics division and records division, and has led the department’s process for national accreditation through the Commission on Accreditation for Law Enforcement Agencies.

Capt. Rohde joined CPD in March 2001 and served seven years as a uniform officer. He also has served on and led the department’s Narcotics and Vice Unit as a detective and sergeant. While serving in the Narcotics and Vice Unit, Rohde led the investigation of massage parlors that ended organized prostitution in Columbus. He also coordinated large-quantity drug and money seizures with federal and state agencies including the FBI, DEA, U.S. Customs and Border Protection and the U.S. Marshalls. His other specialized experience includes serving on the CPD SWAT Team and as a Field Training Officer.

Rohde earned a bachelor’s degree in criminal justice and political science from Indiana University and a law degree from the Indiana University School of Law in Indianapolis.

“Jon is an outstanding law enforcement leader and is exceptionally well qualified to lead the Columbus Police Department,” Mayor Brown said. “He has the breadth of education and experience we need, is a proven leader and is very well respected across the board by our men and women in blue.”

Columbus has the lowest violent crime rate in the state and lower than 90% of the nation. The city’s property crime rate has significantly decreased by 18% over the past two years.

As Chief, Rohde’s priorities will include continuing crime reduction and control by:

  • Cracking down on illegal drugs that led to a 37% increase in drug-related arrests last year;
  • Further building CPD’s community policing efforts that resulted in a 45% increase in extra patrols of the city’s most problematic neighborhoods last year;
  • Traffic control that resulted in a nearly 120% increase in traffic stops in 2013.

Rohde will also make CPD more productive through efficiencies in policies and procedures and use of technology.

“I am honored to be our community’s next police chief and to work with Mayor Brown and our citizens to continue reducing crime rates, aggressively battle the supply of illegal drugs and make our streets safe,” Rohde said. “We have an excellent police department with officers who are committed to our community’s safety and protection.”

CPD’s key command staff will continue in their positions under Rohde, including Deputy Chief Todd Harry and Uniform Capt. Mike Richardson. The command staff will fill the vacant Administrative Captain position once Rohde is officially sworn in as Chief.

“Jason has done a tremendous job leading CPD and making it a stronger, more proactive police department,” Mayor Brown said. “I am personally grateful for all he’s done for the department and our community.”

Chief Maddix will continue to serve as Chief until his retirement date of May 20 to help transition Rohde to Chief.

“I have enjoyed my time as Chief and working with Mayor Brown to make CPD a stronger, more proactive police department,” Maddix said. “Jon is very capable of leading CPD and will keep advancing the department forward.”

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