LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WAVE) - Louisville Metro Police Chief Steve Conrad is leaving the department, WAVE 3 News Troubleshooters have learned.
The news comes amid criticism over the Breonna Taylor officer-involved shooting case in which Taylor was killed and an officer was shot.
Mayor Greg Fischer’s office did not specify the reason for Conrad’s decision.
Conrad has served as police chief since 2012, when Fischer brought him back to Louisville to replace Robert White.
Conrad had left his position of assistant chief of the Louisville Police Department in 2005 to take a chief position in Glendale, Arizona. Conrad left Glendale just a few months after a young officer was shot and killed while on duty. Previous WAVE 3 News stories from 2012 indicate violent crime in Glendale had gone down during four of the six years Conrad was chief there.
His career in Louisville first began in 1980, when he began working as a patrol officer. He then rose through the ranks and achieved the position of assistant chief.
Conrad navigated through several high-profile lawsuits, including violations of the Whistleblower statute, and claims of erroneous traffic stops.
Fischer supported Conrad through other scandals such as the department’s Explorer Program child sex abuse case, which resulted in the prosecutions of two LMPD officers.
Louisville Metro Council asked for his resignation in 2017, when news of the FBI's probe into the Explorer case became known.
Most recently, members of the council have become increasingly frustrated with LMPD’s leadership amid sky-rocketing violent crime numbers.
Conrad has previously received a vote of no confidence by his own officers who argued the department’s morale was at an all-time low. In about a year and a half, a record number of officers left the department to either retire or get a job in another city.
Fischer has continually supported Conrad, pointing to his commitment to being the community’s chief. During Conrad’s tenure, he helped establish programs such as the Synergy Project designed to strengthen the “relationships between Louisville Metro Police and residents to increase collaboration grounded in trust and legitimacy.”