Fullerton, Calif., has appointed a new acting chief to head up its troubled Police Department while Chief Michael Sellers remains on medical leave, reports the Los Angeles Times. Sellers went on medical leave in August as some were calling for his resignation over the beating death of a homeless man, Kelly Thomas, in an incident that involved six Fullerton police officers. Two of the officers face criminal charges.
Capt. Kevin Hamilton, head of the department’s detective division, was initially appointed as acting chief. City officials announced this week that Hamilton will be replaced in the acting role by Capt. Dan Hughes, commander of the department’s patrol division, effective Jan. 3. City Manager Joe Felz said in a statement that the decision to appoint Hughes to replace Hamilton was driven by Hamilton’s desire to retire soon, a plan that he had put on hold to accept the acting chief position. Hughes is a 28-year veteran of the department who grew up in Fullerton.