Adams named interim Groveport police chief

By Rick Palsgrove
Groveport Editor

Groveport Police Chief Ralph Portier will be on medical leave for several weeks so Mayor Lance Westcamp named Sgt. Casey Adams as the interim police chief effective Aug. 20.

“Sgt. Adams has the background and training to handle the job,” said Westcamp, who said Adams attended the FBI Academy and has taken leadership classes. “He has been the second shift sergeant and the officers on that shift respect him and work well with him. Chief Portier is not retiring, but will be off on medical leave and we look forward to his return to service. This is a temporary, interim, not permanent, appointment until Chief Portier’s return. We look forward to Chief Portier’s return to service.”

Westcamp said he does not anticipate any procedural changes in the police department while Portier is away. He said he made the appointment to ensure quality police service to the community with uninterrupted leadership.

“We need to keep going and keep the citizens safe,” said Westcamp. “It’s a tough road ahead, but we will all work together.”

Born in 1973, Adams has been a police officer since 1996 when he first served in the Pataskala Police Department. He served 11 months with the Madison Township Police Department in 2001 and began work with the Groveport Police Department in December 2001. He has been a sergeant for the past 13 years with the Groveport Police. He also holds a bachelor’s degree in criminal justice from Ohio University.
Adams said his experience and education has taught him much about human nature and interacting with people.

“My approach with fellow officers and citizens is, ‘How can I help you?’” said Adams.

As interim police chief, Adams said he wants to, “Keep moving forward and keep things stable until Chief Portier returns.”

He also wants the police to continue to be good ambassadors for the city.

“We do high visibility, community policing,” said Adams. “I want the residents to see we are out there protecting them. Our officers watch out for each other and support the community. It’s teamwork, that’s what it is all about.”

Adams, whose father is former Groveport Police Chief Roger Adams, said when he learned of his appointment as interim police chief he immediately reflected back on the history of the city and its police department.

“I’ve known all the Groveport police chiefs dating back to Al Whipple,” said Adams. “That also includes my father, Tim Carney, Gary York, Bary Murphy, and Chief Ralph Portier. I’ve seen what the community wants from its police chief. I can remember being eight years old when my dad became police chief and watching him work.”
Adams said he is looking forward to serving as the interim police chief and working with his fellow officers.

“It’s a new challenge,” said Adams. “I want to leave everything in good shape for when Chief Portier returns and to keep things progressing.”

The Groveport Police Department is organized this way, according to information provided by the city: a police chief, who reports directly to the mayor; a captain who is the second in command and has responsibility for the Patrol Division an administrative lieutenant who has responsibility for the Investigative Unit, as well as serving as the department’s fiscal management officer; a Detective Division with two investigators; three sergeants and 14 patrol officers; two civilian employees – an administrative assistant and a receptionist.

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