After 40 years in law enforcement – five of them as Salt Lake City’s police chief during some of the city’s most gripping events – Rick Dinse, 63, is retiring, the Salt Lake Tribune reports. He won’t leave until February or March, by which time he hopes to persuade the City Council to consider bonding to finance a new public safety building. Dinse decided to retire after cracking down on meth manufacturers and gang members. He also expanded efforts at community policing – working with citizens to fight crime in neighborhoods.
Dinse called the safe staging of the 2002 Winter Olympics – just five months after the terror of Sept. 11 – the “highlight” of his career. Mayor Rocky Anderson’s relationship with Dinse sometimes has been tense. Anderson strongly disagreed with Dinse’s decision not to release a sketch of a homeless street preacher identified by the kidnapped Elizabeth Smart’s younger sister. The sketch eventually led to Smart’s return in 2003. Elizabeth Smart’s uncle, Tom Smart, who wrote a book about the investigation, said police mistakenly fixated on parolee Richard Ricci to the exclusion of all other suspects, including Brian David Mitchell, who ultimately was charged with the girl’s abduction.