LAFAYETTE, LA (WAFB) - Lafayette Mayor-President Joel Robideaux named Captain Reginald "Reggie" Thomas as Lafayette's Interim Police Chief at a news conference on Tuesday.
Thomas is a 25 year veteran of the Lafayette Police Department and a graduate of the FBI National Academy.
"I am pleased to name a veteran member of the department to this position. I am appreciative to Chief Thomas for accepting this post and once again stepping up for the department and the community. He is an ideal candidate because of his experience at nearly every assignment within the department and because of the respect he has among his peers within the department," said Robideaux.
Robideaux also announced his intent to establish a Deputy Chief, a position which does not currently exist.
"My intention and hope is to have Chief Thomas serve in that role once the national search has been conducted and the permanent Chief has been named," said Robideaux.
Upon the conclusion of the appointment of Interim Chief, Thomas would serve as second in command as Deputy Chief.
Thomas will step in as interim chief when Police Chief Jim Craft retires on Jan. 31, 2016.
Craft will leave the department to serve as executive director of the Louisiana Commission on Law Enforcement, a position appointed by Governor John Bel Edwards. Craft is a 39 year veteran of the Lafayette Police Department, with nine years as the director of the fourth largest police department in the state. He is widely recognized as an expert in the investigation of major crimes, most recently for his leadership during and after the July 23 Grand Theatre Shooting. Under his leadership the Lafayette Police Department was Nationally Accredited in 2013 and just recently completed the re-accreditation process successfully.