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WATCH: Hrvatin pinned as new police chief, department promotes five others

by Courtney Edwards | May 22, 2023 at 4:05 a.m.
City Manager Bill Burrough, right, pins a badge on Hot Springs Police Chief Billy Hrvatin during the HSPD Badge Pinning Ceremony. – Photo by Courtney Edwards of The Sentinel-Record

The Hot Springs Police Department held a badge pinning ceremony on Friday, pinning Billy Hrvatin as Hot Springs police chief, Shawn Roach as assistant chief and four other promotions.

Hrvatin graduated from Cutter Morning Star High School and National Park College with an associate degree. The Hot Springs native has also completed several law enforcement certification programs, City Manager Bill Burrough said in introducing him.

Hrvatin began his career at the HSPD in 1997, spending 17 years assigned to the SWAT team, serving as commander for nearly six, Burrough said. He has served in many other roles throughout his career, including assistant chief from 2020-2023 and interim chief twice in 2020 and 2023.

"I appointed him as the Hot Springs Police Department chief of police on March 29, 2023," Burrough said just before he pinned the badge onto Hrvatin's uniform. "I cannot be prouder of our police department and all the things that they do, the commitment that they have to our community and to each other. And I can tell you that Chief Hrvatin is not only committed to the community, he's committed to our officers, men and women that wear the uniform, and I am truly honored and happy to present to you Chief Billy Hrvatin."

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"I would like to thank City Manager Burrough and the members of the hiring committee, who had enough faith and confidence in me to choose me above several other qualified candidates for this position," Hrvatin said. "The hiring of the police chief is probably one of the most critical hirings the city manager will make, and I greatly appreciate the opportunity."

He also thanked former Police Chief Chris Chapmond, who he served under as assistant chief, his wife and the rest of his family before thanking the staff of the HSPD for the "sacrifices that each and every one of you make to ensure our community is a safer place," he said.

"And I will do my best to ensure that you have the knowledge and the tools that you need to be successful and the empowerment to go out and do your job," he said. "To the community, know that we will be aggressive on crime, but we will be fair and just. You can entrust us to keep the community safe, and we will do everything that we can to make you proud of your police department."

Hrvatin then introduced Shawn Roach, who was pinned as the new assistant chief. Roach joined the Hot Springs Police Department in 1995, Hrvatin said.

"I have a very simple personal quote that some of you in the room have heard me say before, and it quite simply is that egos impede progress," Hrvatin said just before pinning a badge to Roach's uniform. "Shawn is the epitome of not letting his ego impede his progress. He is very humble and grounded, and this is the reason he's a respected leader in our agency. And much of the reason that I chose him as my assistant chief."

Hrvatin then pinned John Tinney, who was promoted to lieutenant, Phillip DeFoor, who was promoted to sergeant, Mark Wilson, who was promoted to corporal, and Richard Nunez, who was promoted to corporal. William Brakefield was also pinned and sworn in as a new officer of the HSPD.

Print Headline: WATCH: Hrvatin pinned as new police chief, department promotes five others


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