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Traverse City Chief O’Brien enters retirement after 32-years of duty

UPDATE 7/4/23 11:31 a.m.

After 32 years on the Traverse City Police Department, Former Chief Jeff O’Brien entered retirement on July 1, 2023, working his last shift that day.

Former Chief O’Brien started his career in 1983 as a part-time Reserve Officer, becoming full-time 8 years later on July 1, 1991.


O’Brien remembers his years on the department where he wore many hats including motorcycle officer, firearms instructor, detective and sergeant.

Watch for the next podcast “For the Community By the Community” on, hear more of Former Chief O’Brien’s stories shared with Bill Froelich.

UPDATE 6/12/23 4:30 p.m.

Traverse City has appointed an interim police chief ahead of current Chief Jeff O’Brien’s retirement at the end of June.


Captain Matthew Richmond will be taking over as interim chief. He started his career with the city in 2004.

Richmond was assigned as a detective, promoted to sergeant, detective sergeant, lieutenant, and most recently captain of patrol services.

He also holds a Master of Science in law enforcement and a public safety leadership degree.

“I know that a lot of people are in tune with the community policing philosophies that this department has practiced over the years. I want to ensure that we’re going to continue to do that, strengthen the trust that we already do have with the community so that we can have the best place to live here in Northern Michigan,” said Richmond.


Captain Richmond steps into the role of interim police chief on July 1.

3/8/23 11 a.m.

After more than three decades with Traverse City’s Police Department, the police chief is retiring.

Police Chief Jeff O’Brien has been the chief since 2015, and he’s served with the department since 1991. Now, 32 years later, to the day, he’ll turn in his badge.


O’Brien says his to-do list includes filling some staff vacancies through promotion and making sure the command staff is in place for a new chief. He also wants to get the department through the annual budget process, for the new budget year, which starts July 1.

That date also was his first day in a TCPD uniform in 1991, and this year it will be his last day on the job.

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