New chief grew up at police station

Thursday, September 15, 2005

Police Capt. Carl Kinnison hung around police officers as a teenage Explorer Scout and washed patrol cars.

His first city job was as dog catcher.

On Wednesday, city manager Doug Leslie appointed the 26-year veteran of the Cape Girardeau Police Department to the job of police chief.

He'll lead the police force starting Oct. 15.

The 48-year-old Kinnison's no stranger to the police chief's office. As assistant chief, he regularly commanded officers when retiring chief Steve Strong was away.

As chief, Kinnison will move to a larger office only a few feet down a second-floor hallway from his current office.

As a 15-year-old, Kinnison rode with police officers and watched them ticket speeders.

He spent two years as a dog catcher while a student at Southeast Missouri State University.

He was 22 years old when the city hired him as a police officer in 1979, but Kinnison didn't expect to stay long.

"I was going to be here maybe three or four years," he recalled.

But he stayed, married and raised two daughters.

As police chief, Kinnison's ready to stay a little longer.

-- Mark Bliss

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