Police Chief Kevin Jones, second from left, joined by his family during the Dec. 5 badge pinning ceremony. Photo by Jake Hibbitts

Chief pinning ceremony draws a crowd

Susanville’s new Chief of Police, Kevin Jones, was joined by more than 60 local residents, including members of his family, in a pinning ceremony at the city chambers during the Dec. 5 meeting. After his pinning, Jones gave a moving speech, detailing his many thanks and incredible journey.

Thirty minutes before Susanville’s interim city administrator Dan Newton opened the doors of the city chambers, people began to gather together. The dark and icy evening was broken by the warmth and love of dozens of Susanville residents, waiting patiently outside and ready to congratulate Jones.

As the room was flooded with the eager group, it quickly became a swarm of excited whispers and shuffling jackets. And yet, Jones had yet to appear in the room.

When he finally appeared, the room broke out into a spontaneous applause. Jones, with a hidden smile, bowed his head as he made his way toward the dais. The meeting could now begin.

Susanville mayor Kevin Stafford, who said Jones, has “lived and worked in our community for a long long time,” introduced the city’s new police chief during the ceremony.

Jones was sworn-in and welcomed aboard to his new position within the city.

Jones gave a heartfelt and humbling speech where he thanked the leadership of people like Susanville’s interim chief of police, Kelley Merritt, Lassen County Sheriff Dean Growdon, Hal Meadows, the sheriff and police department staff and the many other hard-working people of the departments.

Jones became visibly choked-up, and sincerely so, leaving the room without a dry eye. He shared the love of his heros, his father, grandfather, in addition to his wife and family.

Jones anticipated, with an optimistic outlook, his future in the new position. He shared with the group that the city would “be hard pressed to find a cop who loves this job” more than he did, and that they would partner “to do amazing things” and “make an impact” within the community in which he was raised.