San Jose has made its top cop—until-now-acting Chief Edgardo “Eddie” Garcia—the permanent leader of the department.
City Manager Norberto Dueñas announced the promotion Tuesday after the City Council ratified the appointment. Garcia was named acting chief after the January retirement of Larry Esquivel, who left after 30 years on the force to helm the Tracy Police Department.
“Chief Garcia has demonstrated the skill and judgment that we need to rebuild the department’s strength and to earn and keep the trust of both our residents and our police officers,” Dueñas said. “His long experience with this department and dedication to our community will be invaluable for leading our police force during a challenging period for both San Jose and the law enforcement profession.”
— Magdalena Carrasco (@CM_Magdalena) March 1, 2016
Garcia joined the San Jose Police Department in 1992 and became second-in-command under Esquivel in 2013. Before that, Garcia served as deputy chief and led SJPD’s Bureau of Investigations and Bureau Administration.
Throughout his career with SJPD, Garcia has worked in the patrol division, narcotics enforcement and special operations. He has also served as a night detective and homicide investigator. As lieutenant, he oversaw the Community Services Division and the Vice and Criminal Intelligence Units. As captain, he commanded the bureaus of field operations and investigations.
“I’m pleased that we have a dynamic leader like Chief Garcia to step up to lead our department,” Mayor Sam Liccardo said. “I’m looking forward to working with him, his leadership team and all of our officers as we continue to rebuild our department and ensure that San Jose remains one of the safest big cities in the country.”
The Puerto Rico native moved at a young age to San Jose, where he grew up and joined the police force in his early 20s. He earned his bachelor’s degree in criminal justice management from Union Institute and University in Cincinnati, Ohio.
“I am both honored by the confidence in me from the city manager and the city council and humbled by the big responsibility to lead the men and women of our department as we strive to become one of the best police departments in the nation,” Garcia said in a statement Tuesday. “I will continue to do my best to achieve this goal in partnership with our community, the San Jose Police Officers Association and all our officers.”
— Carl Guardino (@CarlGuardino) February 25, 2016