LANSING, Mich. — Mayor Andy Schor wants Ellery Sosebee to be the next police chief. Schor said Sosebee’s knowledge of the city makes him the perfect fit for the job.
“I guess I’ll give you all the tip, and everyone watching, you’ll see tomorrow morning. It’s my intention to recommend Ellery Sosebee as our next police chief.” Schor said.
Schor made that announcement during Monday night’s City Council meeting. After receiving more than 20 applications, Schor said he believes Sosebee is the right person for the job.
“His ideas his thoughts, his communications with the public,” Schor said. “I think he can build trust, not only in the public, but making sure the morale a good within out police department.”
Sosebee has been with the Lansing Police Department since 2002, starting as a police officer and later being promoted to sergeant and lieutenant. In July, he took over as interim police chief after Chief Darryl Green resigned and took a position with the Michigan State University Police department.
“I had a little bit of an advantage because I have been here and I am hitting the ground running, so yeah, I feel pretty good about it,” Sosebee said.
Hitting the ground running for Sosebee means addressing difficult issues like gun violence.
So far in 2021, 23 people have died after being shot in the city. To reduce the number of people losing their lives to gun violence, the police department has started an initiative to get illegal guns off the streets. In past three years, Lansing police have seized over 1200 illegal weapons.
"There seems to be no forethought or forward thinking, when it comes to conflict resolution, too many people think the easy thing to do is to find a gun, or grab a gun and shoot the gun with no thought or consequence,” Sosebee said. “I’m not naive, we’ll always have violence in some fashion, but if you take the guns out of the equation, our violent crime reduces drastically.”
According to a provision in the City Charter, department heads in the city are only given one year contracts. But at Monday’s council meeting, Schor asked for an exemption to the provision in order to grant the multi-year contracts for the next police chief and fire chief.
“The resolution, which was approved, allows the mayor the flexibility to issue contracts for employment for chief of fire and police for up to three years,” Councilwoman Patricia Spitzley said.
Schor said it will “ensure that we have stability."
Schor’s recommendation must be approved by Lansing’s Board of Police commissioners, before Sosebee is appointed as the next chief.