Jun 19, 2013 5:34 PM by Cameron Polom, KSBY News

Meet Paso Robles' new chief of police

A year and a half-long nationwide search finally ended Tuesday night when the Paso Robles City Council selected one of their own as the next police chief.

Chief Robert Burton has lived in the county for 43 years and has spent nearly 20 of them working for the Paso Robles Police Department.

He's gone from the bottom to the top of the department and says he's humbled by his appointment.

"I've been with the department for 17 1/2 years. I started off as a patrol officer and worked my way up through the ranks," said Burton.

He says, as he embarks on a new chapter in his career, the lessons learned from the past will help shape a new future for the city.

"I say communication is the key and getting your community involved with your police department," said Burton.

Since March of last year, Burton has served as interim chief.

"Last year we had the "Operation Crimson Vine", where 22 people were federally indicted on drug charges and they were also tied to gang members," said Burton.

Both of which have become major concerns in the area; however, Burton says he's eager for the challenge.

"You're in a position where you can work with the department, work with the city, work with the community and make a positive difference, and it feels good," said Burton.

Burton actually didn't apply during the first round of the search, but changed his mind when urged by fellow officers.

Burton is to be sworn in during a formal ceremony on July 2nd at 6:30 pm at Paso Robles City Hall.



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