ASU Police Chief John Pickens Leaving Position Early in Wake of Ersula Ore PR Disaster

Categories: ASU

ASU Police Chief John Pickens is leaving his position early following the Ersula Ore video scandal.
John Pickens, campus police chief for Arizona State University, is leaving his position earlier than expected after the video of a professor's arrest created a firestorm of criticism.

As first reported Thursday in the Integrity Report, a blog by an "anonymous coalition of people associated with the ASU Police Department," Morgan Olsen, ASU's treasurer, chief financial officer and vice-president, sent an email to ASU PD employees dated July 9 stating that Pickens will be gone as of this afternoon.

See also:
-ASU Officer Stewart Ferrin Still on Leave After Ersula Ore's Guilty Plea

A June news release by ASU about Pickens' impending departure to a new security position at the university quotes Olsen saying, "Pickens will continue to serve as ASU police chief while a national search is completed and until his successor is on board."

But in the July 9 email, Olsen makes it clear that the search has not been completed: "as you know, a national search for a new police chief is well under way, and we will update you on that effort as it develops."

Olsen did not return calls to New Times on Thursday, but one of his staff members said she'd seen the email and didn't question its authenticity.

Pickens made himself unavailable to New Times when we went to ASU PD headquarters on Thursday. Assistant Chief Mike Thompson has been named interim chief.

This morning, Sharon Keeler, ASU spokesman, had no information about Pickens leaving early, instead arguing that it was "speculation" to connect the facts of his early departure with the terrible week ASU PD just had.

She claimed that Pickens "had" to take accrued vacation time, but would not clarify her statement, saying she'd have to get back to us with answers.

Assistant Chief James Hardina is also leaving, according to the Integrity Report. New Times could not immediately verify that.

Click here for update.

Got a tip? Send it to: Ray Stern.

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Follow Ray Stern on Twitter at @RayStern.

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Contrary to popular belief on these comment boards the majority of cops are very upset by the few who go out of their way to give us a bad name. Specifically when it comes to ASU Police there are many of us unhappy about what’s been going on to the point where employees created a blog to hold the guilty accountable.

To see how you can help rid the community of corruption contact us out at:

David Oh
David Oh

Maybe he should but I'd prefer if the cop responsible left his job instead.

Cozz topcommenter

Lets hope the FBI investigation follows both of them wherever they go and isn't swepted under the carpet because they are leaving their positions...

No matter how it turns out. The whole situation needs to be completely investigated.

TommyCollins topcommenter

Ironically this presents quite a contrast. With normal police agencies the chief administrators are held responsible for the actions or inactions of their employees. Contrast that to our local sheriff agency, known as MCSO. The shurf NEVER takes responsibility and never admits any mistakes or errors.

When will the voters learn?


@danzigsdaddy @TommyCollins  You are so right. And all that happens is the Administrators just get transferred like the priest, they go work at a different place. It does not matter if a investigated is done, it is covered up, there is no accountability for their corrupt behavior.. Then they form fake groups to pretend they care and they are addressing the problems within their agencies. What a racket.......Lucy Babeu

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