Atlanta Police Chief George Turner to retire

Atlanta Police Chief George Turner will leave his post with the city after more than three decades of service. Turner’s retirement was announced by the city on Wednesday.

Sources inside City Hall and the Atlanta Police Department said Chief Turner has planned his retirement for a while and recently calculated his pension, which will be nearly $200,000 a year.

Thursday morning, Mayor Kasim Reed named APD Deputy Chief Erika Shields as Turner’s successor.

MORE: Mayor Reed names new police chief

Turner will leave at a time when crime has become a mixed picture, including a homicide rate which has now climbed to more than 100 killings this year.

Turner became Atlanta’s 23rd police chief in 2010. In the retirement announcement, Mayor Reed said of Turner, “Under his leadership, we have made significant progress toward our goal of making Atlanta one of the safest large cities in America. As he prepares to embark on the next chapter of his career, I want to extend my best wishes and deep appreciation for his unwavering commitment to the residents of Atlanta.”

According to the city, Atlanta’s crime rate has fallen 27 percent since 2009 to its lowest level in four decades.

Chief Turner said, “It has been a pleasure working under Mayor Kasim Reed’s administration. Mayor Reed has played a major role in the success of the Atlanta Police Department and none of this would have been possible without his leadership. Mayor Reed is an avid supporter of public safety initiatives and as a result of his dedication and commitment to citizens and visitors, Atlanta is becoming the safest large city in America.”

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