Mobile selects a new police chief with Prichard’s roots

A longtime member of the Mobile Police Service who has steadily climbed the ladder in his career rose to the top on Tuesday. Major Paul Prine is the new police chief.

The city council unanimously approved the nomination of the Prine, 50 years old.

“There is no doubt in my mind that we have chosen the right one,” said Councilor John Williams. “I would just say to the police, ‘Buckle up. Here we are.'”

The vote came about two weeks after Prine was introduced on October 1 as Mayor Sandy Stimpson’s choice to lead the police force. The city has conducted a lengthy research that Stimpson describes as an “exhausting process” involving interviews and personality profile reviews. The six finalists collectively had over 120 years of law enforcement experience.

Prine’s appointment took effect immediately. His salary will be $ 135,000 per year.

City Councilor Bess Rich said she appreciated Prine’s roots in the department and the fact that he chose to settle in the town proper.

“I think living among us is very important,” said Rich. “It weaves our quality of life here and allows the leader, the commander-in-chief of the force, to integrate into the community.

Prine is originally from Prichard and lived for many years in the Alabama Village neighborhood of that city, where scourge and violence are familiar evils.

“When I had the opportunity to speak to Chief Prine and he told me that he had lived in the village of Alabama for 19 years, I was like, ‘Sold’,” said Councilor CJ Small. “It doesn’t dishonor this community at all, but years ago there weren’t great things going on in this particular neighborhood. “

Small said that Prine’s background gives her a better understanding of how someone is involved in the crime.

City Councilor Fred Richardson said Prine’s influence helped reduce crime at one of his District 1 police stations.

Richardson said Prine would attend District 1 community meetings and give audience members her phone number. He also said that Prine is well known in the city.

“Let me tell you what the magic of that is… no cop is going to abuse someone if they know them,” said Richardson. “If you are known to the officer, nothing happens. It became known.

Prine, after being announced as the next chief on Oct. 1, said his goals as head of the department are as follows:

* Development of a plan to reduce crime through “intelligence-led policing”. Such a strategy emphasizes data collection and analysis.

* Increase engagement by building relationships with faith-based organizations and other groups

* Instill professionalism in service and resolve attrition issues

One of Mobile’s main concerns is the rise in homicides. Mobile, as of Oct. 4, had recorded 42 criminal homicides for the year, just four fewer than last year’s total of 46. The year with the most homicides since 2010 was 2017, when there were 50.

“I blame you that crime is going down in the city of Mobile,” Small said. “It’s not about me, it’s about the citizens… and our image.

About Geraldine Higgins

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