MIAMI (CBSMiami) – The City of Miami has a new top cop.
Houston Police Chief Art Acevedo has accepted the position as the city’s new police chief.READ MORE: Retired Police Major Explains How Miami-Dade Officers Are Trained Not To Mix Up Handgun & Taser
“Our residents can sleep well tonight knowing our City Manager manager brought to Miami the best chief in America,” said Mayor Francis Suarez at a news conference Monday to introduce Acevedo as the new police chief.
Acevedo has been Houston’s police chief for the last four years. Before that, he served as Austin’s police chief.
The Houston police department is four times larger than Miami’s police department. When asked why he accepted the position in Miami, Acevedo replied “Miami is a city on the move.”
Born in Cuba, Acevedo first came to Miami and grew up in California. He was the first Hispanic to lead the Houston Police Department and last summer he gained national attention when he joined marches and protests over George Floyd’s death.READ MORE: With J&J's Single-Shot Paused, Medical Expert Says People Shouldn’t ‘Try To Skimp At This Stage’ When It Comes To 2nd Dose Of Pfizer Or Moderna
“We are living in a time in our nation’s history where the American people are hurting. There’s a lot of pain in this nation and unless we take the time to feel that pain, process that pain, acknowledge that pain of communities of color that are disproportionately impacted by bad policing, we will never get beyond the summer of 2020,” Acevedo said.
Acevedo calls his approach relational policing, one of transparency and accountability.
“We got the Michael Jordan of police chiefs,” Suarez told CBS4’s Jim DeFede regarding the hiring of Acevedo.
The mayor told DeFede that Acevedo was his first choice all along but initially didn’t believe he was interested in coming to Miami. The deal came together very quietly over the past two weeks.
Acevedo will be the first outsider to take the reins since John Timoney was hired in 2003 and led the department until 2010. He will make slightly more than he does now in Houston – about $300,000, according to DeFede.MORE NEWS: 'Bed Tax' Change Backed In Florida House
Miami’s last chief, Jorge Colina, made about $230,000.