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Rocky Ford’s police chief resigns for new position

Posted at 4:58 PM, Jan 11, 2019

ROCKY FORD – Another law enforcement officer is leaving in Otero County. Rocky Ford Police Chief Mickey Bethel announced Friday he is leaving for a new position.

Chief Bethel posted a message to the community on Facebook today, expressing his gratitude for being able to serve the community for more than a decade. He also praised the men and women of the Rocky Ford Police Department, who he called selfless public servants.

Earlier this week all members of the Fowler Police Department resigned. The Otero County Sheriff’s Office is taking over law enforcement there for now.

Chief Bethel’s complete statement follows:

In the 11 years that I have served the good people of the City of Rocky Ford, I have gone to work every day knowing that I do it not for personal gain or notoriety, most definitely not for the money, not for myself, but for the all of the people in the community that I have chosen to serve. I also do it for the great men and women that make up the Rocky Ford Police Department. Men and women who serve selflessly and with the greatest dedication and integrity I have ever witnessed. We have faced difficulties and challenges and overcome great adversity and obstacles as a department and community, but we still stand together and continue to fight the evils that plague our community.

I have been afforded a tremendous opportunity for career growth and have accepted a position with an agency in the metro area. I firmly believe that new leadership at the department can and will be a positive change so that the RFPD can be the very best that it can be. The City of Rocky Ford and its residents deserve only the very best!
I would like to thank the many community, business, and law enforcement partners that I have had the opportunity to become involved with over the years. Without you guys the RFPD would not have been able to accomplish our Mission to “Make a Difference”. Together we have built a department to be proud of through our accomplishments to include, new report writing software (E-Force RMS), hosting three community events annually such as the “Movie Night at the Grand”, “RFPD Easter egg hunt”, and “Picnic at the Park”. These events bring us together, and as I’ve said in the past, “We’re better together than we are apart.” I am proud of the department’s body worn camera program which I implemented along with former Chief Gallegos, the implementation of Procedural Justice, and the excellent relationships we have formed with the District Attorney’s Office, neighboring law enforcement agencies, CBI, and in particular the Rocky Ford R-2 School District. They do an amazing job with the young people in this community and our positive relationship with them is one that I’m particularly proud of.
My goal when I was appointed Chief of Police was to leave the department in better condition than when I became Chief, and I believe that with my great staff we have done just that.

It has been my honor and privilege to serve you the residents of Rocky Ford and the officers of the Rocky Ford Police Department.
May God continue to bless this great community!

Mickey Bethel
Chief of Police