“Our department has great officers that provide a great service, and we’re becoming stronger each year,” reports Batesville Police Chief Stan Holt.
Recently, personnel have been shifted within the department. “With Jeff (Thielking) retiring, Mike Benjamin is taking over as assistant police chief. Blake Roope has been assigned to the detective position, and Patrolman Ryan Metcalf will be working investigations part time with him. Patrolman Brad Wessel is filling the officer’s position.”
The chief stresses, “When looking to fill the position for assistant chief, what drew me to Mike is I believe we share the same vision for the department and commitment to the community .... I see very strong leadership skills in Mike. He’s very much a team player and will do whatever it’s going to take to get our goals accomplished. He took over investigations when I became chief and has done an excellent job. By bumping him up to assistant chief, we’ll continue to move forward and be a pro-active community police agency. We’ll continue the aggressive stance on drug prevention in our community.”
Benjamin says, “I have always enjoyed interacting with people in the community. With my new role within the police department, I am back in uniform, patrolling and out in the community more, so I am enjoying that aspect of it .... Chief Holt and I have been working closely together to identify areas within our community where we can become even better. For example, we want to implement more community policing programs .... (which) allow the community to interact and become more comfortable with the police and vice versa. It’s my belief that building good relationships with the citizens in our area is key to the success of our police department.
“I am honored and excited that Chief Holt has appointed me as his assistant chief, but it’s really not about me. It’s about what I can do in this position to make our department better for our officers and the people we serve.”