Local News

Veteran Cop Named Chapel Hill Police Chief

Posted September 24, 2007

— A 21-year veteran of the Chapel Hill Police Department was named Monday night as the town's new police chief.

Maj. Brian Curran's appointment was announced at the Town Council meeting. He was to assume the post immediately, with an annual salary of $105,000.

"Brian is the best person to lead our police department and become part of the town's senior management team as we work collaboratively to make Chapel Hill an even better place to live," Town Manager Roger Stancil said in a statement.

Curran has served as interim chief since Gregg Jarvies retired as chief in April after 30 years with the department.

Former Fayetteville Police Chief Tom McCarthy was initially picked to lead the department but was unable to start on the job in June because of health reasons. So, the town reopened the application process.

A native of Hornell, N.Y., Curran served in the U.S. Navy for five years before coming to Chapel Hill. He has a bachelor's degree in history from the College of the Holy Cross in Worcester, Mass., earned an Administrative Officers Management Program certificate from North Carolina State University in 2004 and last year attended the FBI National Academy in Quantico, Va.

He has held numerous positions with the Chapel Hill Police Department, including public safety officer, juvenile officer, patrol sergeant, detective, narcotics squad leader and Northside neighborhood squad leader.

"I plan to continue the great work that the men and women of the Chapel Hill Police Department have been performing for the town for years," he said in the statement. "I am also looking forward to working with the manager and his staff, as well as with members of the Chapel Hill community."

Curran will be responsible for assessing the department, creating a leadership development program and a diverse command and supervisory structure, expanding community policing efforts and taking the lead in finding solutions to community issues, Stancil said.


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  • jgirl5830 Sep 26, 2007

    LE is like anywhere else, those salaries you mentioned are correct but you can negotiate your pay depending on education, LE experience, and military service. I wont ever complain about what Cary pays after seeing this!! I guess we're lucky.

  • wcnc Sep 25, 2007

    rpdwife- WCSO starting is $30,720. I didn't quite believe you on the Knightdale starting salary so I checked it out and you're right!! I couldn't believe they pay that much!!!
    Over a 5 year period, RPD ends up making about $5,000 more per year than WCSO because you guys get your cost of living raise on top of your performance raise. BUT, all RPD and WCSO salaries should be increased, I think. Fat chance, though, with 75% of our taxes going to schools (county tax).

  • rpdwife05 Sep 25, 2007

    Tarheel: I agree that the base pay is too low for officers.. trust me.. I know!

    Chapel hill starts around 35k, Cary $36,649, Knightdale $37,785, Garner $36,863, Durham $33,039.... and at the bottom of the list Raleigh $32,649 (nevermind they have the greatest population of all listed). No wonder so many Raleigh officers are leaving for Cary PD and WF PD (highest paid).

    Maybe if we pay officers a little more.. they would spend less time working off-duty and more time with their families, which inturn would cause a lot less turnover rate at the departments.

  • TarHeel Undergrad Sep 25, 2007

    I am unsure of the exact starting salary, but I can't imagine their base pay is more than $32,000 starting off. Factor in taxes and it is significantly less.

    I know most LEO's work off-duty employment and overtime to supplement their salaries, but the base pay for law enforcement officers (and all public servants...fire fighters, EMTs, teachers, etc) in general is far too low.

  • jgirl5830 Sep 25, 2007

    Tarheel undergrad, I dont know what chapel Hill Leo's make but I can tell you my husband is in LE and he makes well above $30,000 a year. Where did you get your info? I know a lot of the small towns around here pay very little but I would think Chapel hill would pay a decent salary.

  • TarHeel Undergrad Sep 25, 2007

    Would any of you be willing to attempt to keep order on Franklin St. on Halloween or during one of the many post-victory celebrations?

    Further, would any of you be willing come in on your day off or after already working a shift to help keep order with young adults calling you every name in the book? For a yearly salary of under $30,000?

    Try walking a mile in someone's shoes before you criticize them because you disagree with what they stand for.

  • TarHeel Undergrad Sep 25, 2007

    As a student at the University of North Carolina, I have been most impressed with the professionalism of both the CHPD and the UNC DPS.

    These comments about them walking through campus scoping out coeds are simply ridiculous and untrue. Policing in a town like this takes a great deal of patience because of the people "newtodurham" and many other unappreciative liberals.

    Also, I am unsure of how you know of them letting frat guys out of DUIs. Were you present during the entire stop, up to and including the SFSTs and PBT reading? All it takes is one look through the police blotter to see that they do not take DUIs lightly.

    MLK Blvd/Historic Airport is a busy road with many cars entering the highway and there is a lot of pedestrian foot traffic. While the speed limit may seen low to you, it is necessary. Don't speed and you won't have any problems. I've never been stopped in the 2.5 years I've been here. It is not a difficult concept. Don't speed=no ticket.

  • has had enough Sep 25, 2007

    newtodurham - "They are over compensated as police officers because of the low rate of violent crime, and basically being speed traps on airport road."

    Maybe the low rate of crime is because of the work they do, in which case their compensation would be appropriate. As far as speed traps go,..Get over it, man! You speed you get a ticket, you don't speed, no ticket... Wow...That's tricky...

  • jgirl5830 Sep 25, 2007

    @ daddio, I agree with you, it is the same thing in Wake county, my husband is in LE and when he goes to court he watches all the lawyers "judge shop" if they see a hard core judge they ask for a continuance of the case, if its an easy judge they put it through becuse they know their client will get off easy. LE have their hands tied behind their backs so what is the point of going after people in a system like we have?

  • daddio Sep 25, 2007

    newtodurham- The incidents that you have described are not only in Chapel Hill, they run rampant throughout Orange County. All of law enforcement here knows that the court system will throw out a large percentage of cases, simply because the judges tend to believe the criminal element in court before they will believe an officer. The "I didn't do it" defense works 90% of the time here. If the cops let people go, it is probably because they know that it will never make it through our wanna-be judicial system. This system incorrectly focuses on "helping" criminals instead of treating them like criminals. There are people walking around Chapel Hill that have been arrested over 30 times. The only thing that our local judicial system does is help keep them free to prey on innocent folks whenever they wish.