Wauwatosa announces acting chief of police

    Wauwatosa Police Chief Barry Weber. (Photo | Isiah Holmes)
    Wauwatosa Police Chief Barry Weber. (Photo | Isiah Holmes)

    June 1 marked the first day of Barry Weber’s retirement as chief of police for the Wauwatosa Police Department (WPD). Weber’s reign lasted 31 years, starting and ending in different controversies at the department. The immediate question raised by his departure is who will sit at the helm until Weber’s replacement is announced later this month?

    A WPD spokesperson informed the Wisconsin Examiner that Captain Luke Vetter was sworn in as acting chief on June 1, when Weber officially retired. Vetter, like several officers and supervisors at WPD, became familiar to protesters who took to the city’s streets during 2020. Vetter’s career stretches back to 2001, as he climbed through the ranks from sergeant, to lieutenant, to captain, to now acting chief.

    Including Weber, 11% of WPD’s officers left the department between July 2020 and June of this year. This included two captains, a lieutenant, a detective and six officers. Wauwatosa’s Police and Fire Commission (PFC) is planning to have a public forum with the candidates as part of the search for a new chief in mid June. The PFC will be accepting questions from the public until June 7 to pose to the as-yet undisclosed candidates.

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    Isiah Holmes
    Isiah Holmes is a journalist and videographer, and a lifelong resident of Milwaukee, Wisconsin. Holmes' video work dates back to his high school days at Wauwatosa East High, when he made a documentary about the local police department. Since then, his writing has been featured in Urban Milwaukee, Isthmus, Milwaukee Stories, Milwaukee Neighborhood News Services, Pontiac Tribune, and other outlets.