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'It's a blessing': A sit-down with incoming Ferguson Police Chief Troy Doyle

Doyle shares why he went into law enforcement and key hopes for the city's public safety landscape.

FERGUSON, Mo. — The Ferguson City Council selected longtime St. Louis County Lieutenant Troy Doyle to lead the city’s police department.

On Thursday, Doyle sat down with 5 On Your Side to discuss his journey and plans for public safety in Ferguson.

Doyle has served in St. Louis County for 31 years and after feeling looked over to serve as chief there twice, he is continuing his life's work elsewhere.

Doyle chose to take his expertise to a community that is near and dear to him.

The suburb is forever stained by the death of Michael Brown who was killed by a fellow law enforcement official back in 2014.

Doyle was on the frontlines for better policing during the upheaval that erupted following Brown’s death.

"In a way, it's a blessing because again, me being reform-minded, it gives me an opportunity to introduce some things," he said. 

Before his career, Doyle told 5 On Your Side, he had his own run-in with an officer growing up over a radar device he had purchased.

“He [the officer who pulled him over] said do you have a receipt? Obviously, I didn't have a receipt, he says well it's stolen and I'm taking it with me. It was at that point, I need to be part of the solution,” Doyle said.

At the top of mind -- the consent decree -- where Ferguson pays the cost for the Justice Department to monitor and maintain data on arrests, traffic stops, and use of force incidents.

"I don't see it as negative. Everything is laid out in there. If you happen to read the consent decree, it all talks about equitable, fair, policing in which every police department should be following,” Doyle said.

Doyle is hoping his expertise will help combat the regional crime problem and recruit and retain more officers in the town, something the department has struggled to maintain.

The other focus is restoring community relations.

"I think it's very important that the police chief get out there in the community not only interact with the residents but interact with the business community because we all have to play a role," he said.

Doyle added he would do the paperwork part because he has to, but out in the community is where he will be most.

"If we do that. I think we can make a difference out here," he said.

The lieutenant’s last day with the St. Louis County Police Department will be March 24.

He is set to be sworn in as Ferguson's police chief on March 27 at 2 p.m. in the Council Chambers of City Hall located at Church Street. Doyle's first day on the job will be April 1.

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