Lakewood Police Chief Announcement

Lakewood names new police chief

Feb. 3, 2023

After a highly competitive selection and recruitment process, Lakewood City Manager John Caulfield announced today he selected Patrick D. Smith as the next Chief of Police for the Lakewood Police Department. He will join the department March 1, 2023.

Patrick Smith, former Chief of Police, Birmingham, Alabama.
Chief Patrick D. Smith

Smith was one of six finalists introduced to the community in December 2022 at a public meet and greet and in an interview panel composed of residents and community leaders.

He comes to Lakewood with over 32 years of law enforcement and leadership experience. Most recently he served as Police Chief of the Birmingham Police Department from 2018 to 2022. While in his home state of Alabama, he demonstrated his strategic management skills while running the largest law enforcement agency in the state. That included increasing engagement with the community, improving staff accountability, modernizing the department by adding a Real Time Crime Center that integrated technology for the department and establishing personnel development programs.

“Chief Smith’s background and experience in implementing innovative technology solutions, coupled with his strong aptitude in building lasting relationships with those he works with and with the communities he serves, will serve our community well as it continues to grow,” said Caulfield. “I am confident Chief Smith is a great fit not only for the department and our organization, but also for our community. I’m excited to see him continue to build on the work achieved by our past chiefs, and continue to elevate our police department to the next level as he leads our officers.”

Prior to returning to Alabama, Smith was a Commander with the Los Angeles Police Department where he had a 28-year career. He moved up the ranks from police officer to commander and ultimately was the Assistant Commanding Officer for the Police Sciences and Training Bureau. At the bureau he planned, coordinated, managed and evaluated bureau-wide training operations for the entire department, including oversight of three police academy campuses. Smith was responsible for new hire training and in-service training for a workforce of 10,000 employees. His bureau developed police training policy and tactical directives after reviewing critical incidents.

As a captain of LAPD’s Metropolitan Division, Smith had tactical management and oversight of large-scale events in the City of Los Angeles. He managed SWAT operations, K-9 search events, mounted enforcement, dignitary protection, the underwater dive team, crime suppression which included hostage situations, and active shooting events.

Smith holds a Master of Arts in Organizational Management and a Bachelor of Science in Business Management from the University of Phoenix. He is a graduate of the FBI National Executive Institute and PERF’s Senior Management Institute for Police. Smith also has certificate training from the Straus Institute for Dispute Resolution at Pepperdine University in Conflict Resolution for Law Enforcement. Additionally, he earned police certifications in California and Alabama.

A proud Marine Corps Veteran, Smith looks forward to working with neighboring Joint Base Lewis-McChord and the military community.

“I am honored and thrilled to be entrusted with this amazing opportunity,” Smith said.

”I look forward to getting to know the community and the dedicated women and men of the Lakewood Police Department. Working together we will continue to enhance the culture of proactive community policing and exceptional service provided to our residents and visitors.”