Kentwood police chief retiring Nov. 1

A courtesy photo of Kentwood Police Chief Thomas Hillen.

KENTWOOD, Mich. — Kentwood Police Chief Thomas Hillen will retire at the beginning of next month.

Hillen has been with the Kentwood Police Department for over 10 years after spending 32 years with the Kent County Sheriff’s Office. His retirement is effective Nov. 1.

“I’m humbled by the department’s achievements and feel grateful to have had the opportunity to work here and serve alongside the team,” Hillen said in a statement. “The officers care for the community, and the community cares for the officers. That is what makes it special to be an officer in the City of Kentwood; it’s just different here.”

Mayor Stephen Kepley said Hillen has been an invaluable asset to the community. Kentwood’s violent and property crime rates are at a five-year low under his leadership.

“For that and so much more, we are truly grateful for his service,” Kepley said in a statement.

Hillen and his wife will spend the winter in Florida and see where life takes them next.

Deputy Chief Richard Roberts will be appointed as the next police chief, pending confirmation from city commissioners. Roberts has been with the department since 1987.

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