MIAMI (CBSMiami) – The City of Coral Gables has a new interim top cop.
Thursday afternoon, Major Ed Hudak was named interim police chief, just one day after the resignation of Dennis Weiner. Hudak has been with the department for 26 years.READ MORE: Florida Senate Signs Off On Controversial Protest Bill
Major Terry Molina was named acting police chief for the day until Hudak was appointed interim chief. She served for just over 8 hours.
The appointment was made during a commission meeting where city officials heard from residents who are fed up with home burglaries in the city and who wanted to voice their concerns.
“Raise your hand if you’ve been burglarized,” said Freddy Balsera. The hands of crime victims in the audience shot up. This crowd, angry and frustrated, is demanding something be done about the number of home break-ins.
One after another, people addressed the commission.
“I’ve been a victim and I’ve been terrorized by crime,” said one victim. “My house was broken into, where all the appliances were stolen.
The crowd is concerned after a rash of home burglaries and many complained they don’t see police officers on the beat.READ MORE: Miami-Dade PD Investigating Officer-Involved Shooting In Hialeah Gardens
“I have never seen as many police officers in the City of Coral Gables in the last year as I have seen here today,” said one woman. “They’re invisible.”
Break-ins have become such a big issue in the Gables that Weiner resigned as the city’s police chief on Wednesday.
Weiner had been under fire from city commissioners and residents over what they said were questionable crime statistics from the chief’s office which stated burglaries were down 25-percent this year.
Many believe break-ins are up. Even the commission was not able to get a solid answer.
Now the FBI is stepping in. They’ll do an audit in an effort to find the real stats.
Interim Chief Hudak plans to have a report on the interim city manager’s desk by Tuesday outlining the changes he plans to make in the department. Meanwhile, he said the community should notice a change immediately.
“We’re going to be out in front of the community by 9 o’clock tomorrow morning to make sure they know we’re out there,” he said. “I’ll meet with the midnight shift tonight.”
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