“I want to thank Commissioner Chong for his over three and a half years of service to the City of Mount Vernon, two of which he served as my Police Commissioner. He leaves us a department that is better than when he first took the reins; a department filled with dedicated officers who care about our city.
Following Commissioner Chong’s departure at the end of the year, Chief Barbara Duncan will assume the day-to-day management of the police department until a replacement is named. I have already commenced a search, both locally and nationally, to find a replacement. Commissioner Chong has assured me that he will cooperate in any transition.
Together, we have placed particular focus on building the strength of our department’s community policing strategies and I commend Commissioner Chong with helping to achieve this goal. This work has resulted in the national recognition of the department through the granting of ten new community policing officers through the Federal Stimulus COPS program. Commissioner Chong has always worked with me. This is evidenced by the successes of now two targeted Operation Protect implementations, the bringing in of the Shot Spotter gun detection system, and the increasing indication that we are breaking the so-called “no snitching” mentality in the community. We will continue on the path of becoming the best community policing department in the country.
Overall, in Mount Vernon, crime is on a steady decline and although we have seen a rash of homicides, the department’s 80 percent solve rate of these heinous acts is virtually unheard of anywhere else in the country.
I wish Commissioner Chong well in his future law enforcement career and wish his family even greater blessings.”