- Associated Press - Sunday, March 1, 2015

CHICAGO (AP) - The Chicago Police Department has its first ever deputy chief.

Mayor Rahm Emanuel and police Superintendent Garry McCarthy announced Friday that 28-year Chicago police veteran Eric Washington was selected for the role.

Washington will oversee the department’s community policing program, which seeks to build stronger ties with residents and community leaders.

Emanuel used the announcement to tout his efforts to reduce the city’s gang violence, an issue that has figured in the mayoral election.

Emanuel faces Cook County Commissioner Jesus Garcia in an April 7 runoff. His challenger has criticized the mayor over his record on crime.

Emanuel said in a news release that he has taken hundreds of officers out of administrative positions and put them on the street, including in foot and bike patrols.

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