Miami's new police chief speaks about future
MIAMI (WSVN) -- Miami's interim police chief is officially the city's new top cop.
On Tuesday, Manuel Orosa was sworn in as the new police chief of the Miami Police Department. Orosa said his swearing-in ceremony was very emotional for him, because his family was able to attend. "It was [a crowning moment for me], especially for my kids and my family members," he said.
Orosa has served the department for over 30 years. "My vision for the police department is basically putting more officers in patrol ," said Orosa. "We have 54 vacancies that we're moving to fill, we're going through a list now, and we're going to hire 31 from that list."
Orosa had been the interim chief of Miami Police since September, when former police chief Miguel Exposito was fired for insubordination. The former police chief's disagreements with City of Miami Mayor Tomas Regalado and City Manager Johnny Martinez were well-known.
The new chief hopes to avoid the same fate. "I really do not want to have a bad relationship with anybody, and I'll do everything within my power not to have one," he said.
Another challenge Miami's new top cop faces is overcoming the negative perception the public has of the Miami Police Department, since police shot and killed seven African-American men during Exposito's tenure.
The U.S. Department of Justice is currently conducting an investigation into the department. Orosa said, "The same policies that we have today, we had back in 2007, when they did the last review, and we got a clean bill of health on them, so nothing has changed from then, other than the structure of the police department, which I am putting back to the way it was and tweaking it here or there to make improvements on [it]."
The new police chief hopes his department can move forward and overcome all the challenges it has previously faced. "My whole way of thinking is, I'd like to leave the past in the past," said Orosa.
(Copyright 2011 by Sunbeam Television Corp. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)