Halifax, VA - Business owners and residents in Halifax have voiced their concerns about a lack of police presence. Now they're celebrating the arrival of a new police chief.
The town went nearly a year without a chief after David Martin resigned from the position last December.
This was his first week, but Chief Kevin Lands is excited to be in Halifax.
Town Council recently completed a 10 month search to find a new chief. But they believe the man they chose was worth the wait.
Kevin Lands comes to Halifax with 17 years of experience in law enforcement.
"I'm really happy to be a part of the community and I look forward to becoming a fixture here, " said Lands.
This is great news for the strained police department, which is made up of four officers and folks in the town they protect.
Betsye Throckmorton owns a restaurant across from the police department that was part of a string of burglaries last month.
"I definitely think he will follow through as thorough as possible to make sure whoever did this is brought to justice, " said Throckmorton.
"My plan next week is to meet with the investigator who's doing the investigation and just come up to speed and try to help that investigation along, " Lands said.
He already has new ideas he would like to implement to make sure there is police presence 24 hours a day.
"The full-time police officers have really done a good job. My job now is to organize that schedule a little better and maximize the coverage, so that the town is fully covered at all times, " Lands said.
Halifax Mayor Dick Moore is looking forward to that coverage.
"I think our business community, our town council and myself are all in sync that this is the right man for the right job at the right time, " said Moore.
The mayor says he's grateful for the help of the Virginia Association of Chiefs of Police and Lt. David Irby - who acted as chief during the interview process.
Lands, a former Dinwiddie resident, is looking forward to his wife and two sons joining him in their new home.