FIRST ON KIRO 7: Demoted SPD leader now back as assistant chief

by: Amy Clancy Updated:


Nick Metz, who was demoted by the former Interim Chief, is now back as an assistant Seattle police chief overseeing the field support bureau, officers were told Wednesday morning.

In late November, Metz announced he would be move from assistant chief to captain beginning Dec. 2. But in January, the interim chief who demoted Metz, Jim Pugel, was replaced by interim chief Harry Bailey. The change was made by Seattle’s new mayor, Ed Murray.

After Bailey was announced as interim chief earlier this month, he and Metz hugged. Pugel and two other leaders who have been forced out – Assistant Chief Clark Kimerer and Assistant Chief Mike Sanford – were not there.

Hired in Aug. 1983, Metz started as a patrol officer in the downtown corridor and became a sergeant in 1989 before moving to roles in the East Precinct, Internal Investigations and the State Criminal Justice Training Center. In his earlier role as assistant chief, Metz oversaw the homicide, fraud investigation, auto theft, major crimes, and other units.

This is the latest in a series of shake=ups within the Seattle Police Department. Bailey who turns 70 this year, started with the department in 1969 and came out of retirement to take the interim chief job.

Click here to read more about changes in the SPD command staff.

Follow this link to read the letter Metz sent to officers when he was demoted in November.

Below is the memo sent Wednesday from Bailey:

Since I have become the Interim Chief of Police, I have made it a priority to keep the employees of the Seattle Police Department informed about all of the changes occurring—I want you to hear about them from me first. With that in mind, I would like to give you some information about the reorganization of two bureaus and make some important personnel announcements.

Bureau Changes

The Professional Standards Bureau has been reorganized and will be known as the Compliance and Professional Standards Bureau.  It now includes Compliance Office staff; the Education & Training Section; and the Audit, Policy & Research Section, as well as the newly-formed Force Investigations Unit.  In addition, the Special Operations Bureau has been divided into two separate bureaus: Special Operations and Homeland Security.

Personnel Announcements:

I would like to announce the promotion of Captain Nick Metz to Assistant Chief.

I have made the following personnel assignments for my Command Staff:

Assistant Chief Michael Washburn                Chief of Staff

Assistant Chief Tag Gleason                            Compliance and Professional Standards Bureau

Assistant Chief Robin Clark                             Special Operations Bureau

Assistant Chief Paul McDonagh                      Homeland Security Bureau

Assistant Chief Joe Kessler                               Patrol Operations Bureau

Assistant Chief Carmen Best                            Criminal Investigations Bureau

Assistant Chief Nick Metz                                 Field Support Bureau

I have also assigned the following captains as precinct commanders:

Captain Chris Fowler                                     West Precinct Commander

Captain Steve Wilske                                     Southwest Precinct Commander

Captain Pierre Davis                                      East Precinct Commander

Captain John Hayes                                       South Precinct Commander

Captain Dave Emerick                                   North Precinct Commander

Clearly, not all of the assignments have been announced and we will continue to evaluate additional personnel assignments within each bureau.

Each member of my team is committed to my goal of achieving the highest standards in policing.

Harry Bailey

Interim Chief of Police

KIRO 7 Executive Producer Casey McNerthney contributed to this report. Want to talk about the news of the day? Watch free streaming video on the KIRO 7 mobile app and iPad app, and join us here on Facebook.