ST. LOUIS COUNTY (KMOX) – St. Louis County Police Chief Tim Fitch is retiring.
Fitch broke the news on his blog, “Chief’s Chat” Friday morning.
Fitch, who has been chief since 2009, said he will retire in February to start his own public safety consulting group.
“It’s been said that the best time to leave is when you still love what you are doing. That’s how I can describe my entire career. Retiring from this position was not an easy decision,” he said in the post.
“My family and I are looking forward to the next part of our lives in the world of private business.”
He went on to thank those he worked alongside.
“I truly believe that the men and women serving at the St. Louis County Police Department are the best in the nation. Due to their hard work, crime in the past five years is at historical lows. It has been an honor to work side-by-side with these professionals since 1983.”
Fitch spoke with reporters at 1 p.m. Friday. He said the decision has been a year in the making and has absolutely nothing to do with an FBI investigation into the county police board.
“A year ago I started thinking, ‘what do I want to do with the rest of my life?’ I was perfectly fine with being the St. Louis County Police Chief for the rest of my working life. However, this opportunity came along and it really makes a lot of sense,” he said.
Fitch says he kept it a secret from everyone in his office and the public until he posted about it on his blog this morning.
St. Louis County Executive Charlie Dooley issued a statement Friday afternoon, congratulating Fitch on his retirement.
“Chief Fitch dedicated his life to the St. Louis County Police Department and we certainly owe him a debt of gratitude for building one of the best most honored police departments in the country.”