At a press conference Monday, Aug. 5, Columbia City Manager John Glascock announced the selection of Geoff Jones as the chief of the Columbia Police Department. Jones has served in the interim chief role since Feb 3; his appointment as chief will be effective immediately.
"Since my appointment as city manager, I have spoken with a number of community leaders and activists, non-profits, local law enforcement leaders and many others. Overwhelmingly, they support Geoff in the role of police chief," Glascock said. "I have evaluated the performance of Chief Jones in his interim role. Every challenge I asked Geoff to work on when I appointed him as interim chief, he has met or exceeded. Morale has improved, the Police Department's image in the community has improved, relationships with local law enforcement agencies have been mended and bold steps have been taken to stabilize the department."
Jones was raised in Columbia and attended Columbia Public Schools graduating from Rock Bridge High School. Jones first found his passion for policing with the Columbia Police Department as a teenager when he volunteered as a police cadet.
"It was my hope, my dream as a teenager to one day become the Police chief in my hometown," Jones said. "I am thankful for the support I have received from the community, other partners in the City, and the amazing members of the Columbia Police Department. This works because we work together."
Jones stated that he will continue to lead Police Department staff to build relationships, foster trust and address issues.
"As I said when I was appointed interim chief, policing must be built on trust. I ask that all community members help us build a police department where we can develop together, gain understanding and build trust," Jones said. "We will see progress through action and our work together will be the foundation for a community policing model that is reflective of our City's values."
Jones earned a bachelor's degree in 1997 from Central Missouri State University in criminal justice. He worked as a police officer in Sedalia for a year before joining the Columbia Police Department in 1998. During his career at CPD, Jones has worked as a patrol officer, a narcotics investigator, an investigative sergeant, the commander of training and recruiting, a patrol squad commander, an FBI Task Force officer, the commander of the Community Outreach Unit and most recently as interim chief. Jones earned a master's degree in criminal justice and sociology in 2012 from Lincoln University. He is a board member for the Columbia Salvation Army and a former board member and current law enforcement liaison to Missouri Concerns of Police Survivors.
His annual salary will be $130,000 and includes the benefits package for department directors. A swearing-in ceremony will occur at a date to be announced.
A photo of Jones is attached to this release.