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Interim may head city police

By Shelley Smithssmith@salisburypost.comSalisbury will probably have an interim police chief after current Chief Mark Wilhelm steps down at the end of 2009.
City Manager David Treme expects to take that step while he finds a permanent replacement.
“If I started (the job search) today, I don’t know if I’d have someone by the end of the year,” said Treme. “I’m still giving consideration to how I might proceed.
“We’ve done different things in the past, and we’ll probably initially try to talk with different members of the Salisbury Police Department and try to figure out what would be the best thing to do.”
Treme said he would know more about the opening by the end of next week.
Wilhelm announced Tuesday that he would retire at the end of the year after nearly 31 years with the Salisbury Police Department.
Wilhelm began as a patrol officer in 1979, patrolling for eight years. He was then promoted to patrol sergeant. After four years, he became investigations sergeant.
He served as lieutenant for one year in investigations, then went back to patrolling for a few months.
“Several months later I was transferred back to detective lieutenant after Jim Hurley retired,” said Wilhelm.
He was promoted to captain. In 2000 he was appointed deputy chief, and in 2003, he began his six-year career as chief of police.
When asked why he stayed in law enforcement in Salisbury for so long, Wilhelm said, “because it was home. I was born and raised in Rowan County.”
Although Wilhelm is retiring, he hopes to find a part-time job.
“I need something more or less to keep me busy,” said Wilhelm. “I’m ready to do something different.”
Wilhelm said he has put in applications for employment several places, including the Rowan County Magistrate’s Office.
“I haven’t heard anything back on any of them,” said Wilhelm.

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