May 13th, 2010 | by JAMES PITKIN News | Posted In: CLEAN UP, Cops and Courts

New Chief Makes Heads Roll on the 15th Floor of the Police Bureau (Updated with Press Release)

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Cops say Mike Reese has wasted no time as Portland's new top cop before purging the chief's office of several high-profile figures.

Three sources close to the police bureau tell WW that Leslie Stevens and John Eckhart have been told they'll no longer be employed on the 15th floor of the Justice Center. Two of those sources say Brian Martinek also is out.

Stevens is head of the bureau's Office of Accountability and Professional Standards. Former Chief Rosie Sizer, who was ousted Wednesday when Mayor Sam Adams took over the cop shop from Commissioner Dan Saltzman, hired Stevens in 2008. Stevens used to head City Hall's Independent Police Review Division.

Sizer made Eckhart assistant chief of investigations last fall. Eckhart formerly was a commander in charge of the bureau's detectives unit. A source says Reese gave Eckhart the option of being demoted to captain, but Eckhart chose to retire.

Sizer hired Martinek, a former police chief in Vancouver, Wash., in 2006 as assistant chief of operations in Portland. He is close to Sizer's husband, former Multnomah County Sheriff Dan Noelle, and also one of the most reviled commanders in the bureau among the rank and file.

Police spokeswoman Detective Mary Wheat says she cannot confirm any of those changes.

UPDATE: On May 14, the day after we posted this story, the police bureau put out the following news release:
Chief Michael Reese has announced the following personnel changes:

Services Branch Assistant Chief Larry O'Dea, is moving to the Operations Branch. Current Operations Branch Assistant Chief Brian Martinek will remain with the Portland Police Bureau until July 1 and will be assisting AC O'Dea with the transition.

Captain Eric Hendricks, currently assigned to the Traffic Division, will be the new Assistant Chief of Investigations. Assistant Chief John Eckhart will remain with the Bureau until his retirement on July 2 and will be working with Captain Hendricks on the transition.

Director Leslie Stevens will remain in her current position until June 30. Her position of Police Professional Standards Manager is included in the proposed budget reduction and will be eliminated July 1.

The Assistant Chief of Services position will remain vacant at this time.

"I extend my sincere appreciation to Assistant Chief Martinek, Assistant Chief Eckhart and Director Stevens for their commitment and service to the Portland Police Bureau," said Chief Reese. "I also want to thank Assistant Chief O'Dea and Captain Hendricks for accepting their new positions and look forward to their leadership and collaboration."
 
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