Quincy swears in new police chief

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Charles H. Featherstone/Columbia Basin Herald Former Grant County Deputy Sheriff Kieth Siebert was sworn in Tuesday as Quincy’s new police chief.

QUINCY — Former Grant County Sheriff’s Deputy Kieth Siebert was sworn in Tuesday as this city’s new police chief.

“I’m very excited, I’m very happy to be here, proud to be selected to represent the city,” Siebert told a packed meeting room during a regularly scheduled city council meeting.

“I can’t wait for tomorrow to start,” he said.

Siebert replaces William Larson, a veteran of the Washington State Patrol who has been the city’s acting police chief since April, following the resignation of Police Chief Bob Heimbach.

At the time, Heimbach said he was given the choice of resigning or being fired following a long period of tension within the police department and between Heimbach and Mayor Jim Hemberry.

Larson will continue for a month as deputy police chief to help with the transition.

Siebert said the first thing he intends to do tomorrow is to meet with the Quincy Police Department’s three sergeants.

“For the first 30 days, I just want to listen,” he said.

The Quincy City Council also approved hiring a new police clerk. The city currently has two, but Joy Siebert — wife of the new police chief — has tendered her resignation and will be leaving the Quincy Police effective March 31.

The council also had a lengthy discussion about changing the name of a portion of M Street Northeast — also known as Road 11 Northwest — where the new high school will be located to “Jackrabbit Way” after the high school’s mascot.

“The road already has two names,” said Maintenance Supervisor Dave Reynolds. “That roadway will have three different names and it will add confusion for emergency services and general traffic.”

“It will be a nice thing, and show Jackrabbit pride, but if it’s dangerous, then maybe we shouldn’t,” said Silvia Esparza, one of two Quincy High School students who sit on the city council.

Hemberry wanted to delay any motion on renaming the stretch of road to the next meeting, noting that two council members who might have strong opinions on the matter were not present at the Tuesday meeting.

Charles H. Featherstone can be reached via email at countygvt@columbiabasinherald.com.

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