With Carthage Police Capt. Randee Kaiser leaving the department to take over as Jasper County Sheriff, Police Chief Greg Dagnan has announced the changes the department will make to fill Kaiser's position as second in command of the department.
• Dagnan said Lt. Bill Hawkins, currently supervisor of detectives, will move up to Captain and become Dagnan's assistant chief.
• Sgt. Josh Cahoon, currently a night shift commander, will move to Lieutenant and take over as supervisor of detectives.
• Sgt. Doug Dickey will move from school resource officer, a position he's held for six years, and take Cahoon's position as night shift commander.
• Patrolman Ben Vogt, currently a day-shift patrol officer, will move into the schools as school resource officer alongside Officer Kevin Provins.
• On Jan. 1, when Kaiser's retirement becomes official, Dagnan said an officer in the Jasper County Jail has been interviewed and will be hired as a patrol officer.
Dagnan said the department has been lucky because it has had time to plan for these changes. He said the various officers have been working with the people who will move into their current positions and offering advice and guidance.
“We've had a good idea since the primary, and we've known for sure since the general election, that this transition was going to happen, so what an opportunity for everyone to train the person that's going to take their job,” Dagnan said. “It's been fun to see that, it's been fun to see everyone actually have the time to mentor their successors, give them some advice.”
Kaiser has been with the Carthage Police Department since 1995, when he joined the department as a patrol officer. He's moved up through the ranks as a detective and drug investigator, and moved into the Captain's position weeks before Dagnan was hired in 2007.
“It was interesting with Randee because he and I got our jobs at about the same time,” Dagnan said. “He was assistant chief a couple of months before I was chief and normally the transition is not like that. The assistant chief can help the new chief or vice versa. We became friends very quickly because we really had to rely on each other even more so than the normal relationship because every decision was 'are you going to do that or am I?'”
Dagnan said Kaiser moving to the Sheriff's Office will be a loss to the Department, but he feels the department is ready for the change.
“When he was a street officer, he was fabulous, he was great in the drug task force and he's been an outstanding leader for this department,” Dagnan said. “It does hurt to lose Randee, but his leadership, just the style that he has, he has trained the people below him so they can take over when he leaves. Because of his good leadership, we're not in as bad a position as we would normally be losing someone that valuable.
Page 2 of 2 - “Losing Randee as a person and a leader is a loss, but the mission of our department is so ingrained in all the leaders here that the department itself won't change. The mission will continue.”