HALLSVILLE, Mo. - The Hallsville Board of Alderman has hired a new Chief of Police. The board hired Robert Bias to be the city's new chief of police.
After a month of no full-time police officers in Hallsville, the city will have their first full-time law enforcement presence at the end of December.
Currently the Hallsville Police Department has three part-time officers, with two full time positions open.
ABC 17 News spoke with Bias today and he addressed the current shortage situation as a challenge, but a challenge he is willing to take on.
"We have two great law enforcement training institutes here in mid-Missouri," he said, "I will start there to recruit and make my presence known. Even if I have them (officers) for two to three years, that's a win for me."
Filling the two open full-time positions is not Bia's only priority. The relationship between the community and police is one that Bias said hasn't been good.
"There is not a great relationship between police department and city of Hallsville residents, and I hope to fix that," he said, "I've been speaking with residents and they told me they rarely saw the police chief in town, and I want to be part of this community."
ABC 17 News spoke with a Hallsville Board of Alderman member who said the process started about a month ago and that two other candidates were being considered for the position. One of the deciding factors was Bia's willingness to want to have a better relationship with the community.
Bias previously worked for the Centralia Police Department as a lieutenant/assistant Chief and the Boone County Fire Protection District as lieutenant/ emergency medical technician.
The city will have a open house at City Hall for the community to meet the new chief on Tuesday, Dec. 27 starting at 9 a.m., Bias will be sworn in at 10 a.m.