June 21st, 2013 11:45 am | by ANDREA DAMEWOOD News | Posted In: City Hall, Cops and Courts, PDX News

Portland Police Clean House in East Precinct

mike reese portland policePolice Chief Mike Reese

Portland Police Chief Mike Reese announced major changes to his command staff lineup today, including a total change of leadership in East Precinct, the city's busiest.

Two retirements—by East Precinct Commander Mike Lee and Tactical Operations Division Captain Ron Alexander—set off a chain of shifts that include moving embattled Capt. Mark Kruger out of his post in East Precinct.

Kruger, who was first swept up in controversy in 2009 over allegations he is a Nazi sympathizer, has been in the news again over a lawsuit filed by former subordinate Lt. Kristi Galvan for workplace harassment. Galvan says Kruger harassed and retaliated against her when she was promoted to her position and put in East Precinct.

Former Assistant Chief Mike Kuykendall also got swept up in the drama, and resigned over inappropriate text messages he sent to Galvan calling Kruger a Nazi.

Galvan, The Oregonian reported, was demoted to sergeant and moved to Central Precinct earlier this year.

In a press release, Reese announced the following promotions and changes:
Captain Sara Westbrook, currently assigned to Central Precinct, will be promoted to Commander and assigned to East Precinct. Captain Westbrook is a 27-year-veteran of law enforcement, 19 with the Portland Police Bureau and eight with Thurston County and Tumwater (WA) Police Departments. Captain Westbrook was instrumental in creating and commanding the new Behavioral Health Unit (BHU) for the Portland Police Bureau. Captain Westbrook has also been on the Board of Directors for JOIN for more than three years.

Captain Kevin Modica, currently assigned to the Family Services Division, will be promoted to Commander and assigned to the Transit Police Division. Captain Modica is a 31-year law enforcement veteran, 27 with the Portland Police Bureau. Prior to joining the Bureau, Captain Modica spent four years as a Deputy with the Clackamas County Sheriff's Office.

Captain Modica has previously served in the Youth Services Division, Personnel, the Tactical Operations Division, Gang Enforcement, the Portland Office of Emergency Management, Detectives and the Gang Resistance Education and Training Program (GREAT). Captain Modica is on the National Policy Board for GREAT, is a Fellow candidate at the Georgetown University Juvenile Crime Prevention Institute, attended the JFK School of Government for Crisis Management, the Hatfield School of Government at Portland State University, and is an instructor at the Oregon Department of Safety Standards and Training (DPSST).

Captain Modica has received many awards including the Dennis Darden Officer of the Year Awards, two Distinguished Service Medals, and the MLK Lifetime Achievement Award. Captain Modica is also a member in good standing in the National Organization of Black Law Enforcement Executives (NOBLE). Captain Modica is a high school and AAU girls basketball coach at Riverdale High School. Captain Modica has three daughters: Lauren, 30, is an actress in Portland; Rachel, 27, is a teacher in New York; and, Naomi, 23, recently graduated from the University of Oregon.

Current Transit Police Division Commander Mike Crebs will remain in place to assist Captain Modica during a brief transitional period, due to the complexities of managing the multi-agency Transit Police Division.

Other personnel moves include:

Captain Pat Walsh will transfer from the Chief's Office/DOJ Compliance Coordinator to the Tactical Operations Division.

Captain Mark Kruger will transfer from East Precinct to the Drugs and Vice Division.

Captain Ed Hamann will transfer from the Drugs and Vice Division to the Family Services Division.

Captain Dave Hendrie will transfer from the Traffic Division to East Precinct.

Captain positions in the Traffic Division, Central Precinct and the DOJ Compliance Coordinator will be filled at a later time.

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