UIPD selects deputy as new interim chief


photo courtesy of UIPD

Matthew Myrick poses for a headshot. He has recently accepted the position of interim chief for the UIPD.

By Laszlo Richard Toth, Staff Writer

A new interim chief of the University of Illinois Police Department has accepted the position after Craig Stone stepped down Jan. 15.

“I feel comfortable taking over and steering the ship for a while we go through this interim period,” said Matthew Myrick, the interim chief. “We’re blessed to have some really good people, some dedicated staff.”

Myrick previously served as deputy chief for the University Police Department since 2016. 

“We are fortunate to have someone who’s already in that leadership position, [Myrick] knows what’s going on at the department, knows the people, he’s obviously been here for a long time now,” said Patrick Wade, communications director for the UIPD. “It’s good to have that steady, reliable leadership when we do have a change at the head like this.”

Myrick also served as interim chief in 2018, after the previous chief, Jeff Christensen, retired. 

Get The Daily Illini in your inbox!

  • Catch the latest on University of Illinois news, sports, and more. Delivered every weekday.
  • Stay up to date on all things Illini sports. Delivered every Monday.
This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google Privacy Policy and Terms of Service apply.
Thank you for subscribing!

“I think with any interim role you have to balance where the organization has been, where you think the organization is going and try to have a good mix in between,” Myrick said. “Any long-term strategic decisions obviously need to be made to the person that is chosen to lead the organization moving forward.”

Stone served as chief of police for about a year and a half starting in 2018. He is leaving to take a position with the Columbus, Ohio police department, where he previously worked for 29 years, according to a report by the News-Gazette. 

It is unclear how long it could be until the next permanent chief is selected. When Christensen retired, it took about six months for Stone to be named as chief. Many factors may affect this time frame, but Wade said that it will certainly be at least a few months before a new chief is named. 

It is still not clear at this point whether a search committee has been selected to find a new chief. The selection process is entirely handled by the Chancellor’s office, under which UIPD is controlled, but it seems likely that members of the University Police will be asked to be part of the search committee. 

“Anytime a police department is looking for a new chief, you want someone who is obviously experienced in the law enforcement industry,” Wade said. “You want someone who is going to be able to take all these different people who are in these different roles and get us all moving in the same direction to accomplish our mission of keeping the campus safe.”

In the meantime, Wade appears to be confident in Myrick’s ability to lead the University of Illinois Police Department until a permanent chief is selected. 

“I’m glad we have interim Chief Myrick here to be a steady leader for us during this time of transition,” Wade said. “I think we’re moving in a good direction; I’m confident that interim chief Myrick will keep us headed in that good direction, and I’m looking forward to what the future holds.”

[email protected]