• School board names new CMS police chief

    By: Torie Wells


    CHARLOTTE, N.C. - The Charlotte Mecklenburg Schools Board of Education voted on a new Charlotte Mecklenburg School Police Chief Tuesday night.

    The current Interim CMS Police Chief Randy Hagler is the new chief.

    Earlier, Channel 9 had a one-on-one exclusive interview with Hagler.

    "It's a challenge every day to make sure our students are safe. That's why we exist," Hagler said.

    Hagler has been acting Interim CMS Police Chief since May when former Chief Bud Cesena retired suddenly. He was the CMS Police Deputy Chief before that.

    Hagler has been with the CMS Police Department for six years. He was with Charlotte Mecklenburg Police Department for 29 years before that.

    While he is not new to CMS, he told Channel 9 he will be having new discussions to make sure the department is staying fresh.

    "You've got to look at what's going on in other parts of the United States and learn from it. We've got to take a fresh look continuously at what we are doing," he said.

    The interim chief said he has been doing a lot of listening as he speaks with parents and school officials to understand their concerns. He said he recently has been answering questions about the districts new security plan that's underway. It includes new cameras, controlled access plans and eventually a new identification system.

    "I don't want to say it will make it easier. I think it will make us more effective," Hagler said.

    Hagler said that he knows firsthand the job is a lot of work, but he makes a point of making time to be where the students are.

    "I'm at a school somewhere almost every day," he said. "That's what drives us, that's why we are here."

    Hagler said the CMS Police Department is made up of more than 120 people, from security associates to sworn officers to dispatchers.

    The district did interview other candidates, from outside the school district. The superintendent told Channel 9 months ago that CMS was going to take its time to find the right person.

    If Hagler is named chief Tuesday, a new search will begin to hire a deputy chief.

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