Louisville Police Chief Resigns After Scheffler Arrest

We’ve got some significant news out of Louisville today. The city’s police chief, Jacquelyn Gwinn-Villaroel, has resigned amid a storm of controversies that have plagued the department in recent weeks. This comes on the heels of her suspension over the mishandling of a sexual harassment claim against an officer.

Gwinn-Villaroel’s resignation adds to the ongoing turmoil within the Louisville Metro Police Department (LMPD). She is the third full-time chief to resign or be fired since 2020, a period marked by significant upheaval following the fatal shooting of Breonna Taylor during a botched drug raid.

The immediate catalyst for her resignation was her suspension due to the mishandling of a complaint made by Major Shannon Lauder against a fellow police major. Lauder had reported sexual harassment during a command staff meeting in May. Shockingly, it’s claimed that Major Brian Kuriger was promoted to lieutenant colonel by Gwinn-Villaroel just one minute after he was accused of harassment.

This incident has thrown the department into further disarray, compounding the fallout from a recent scandal involving world No. 1 golfer Scottie Scheffler. Scheffler was wrongly arrested at the PGA Championship in May, charged with second-degree assault of a police officer. The charges were later dropped, but the incident added to the department’s mounting issues.

Mayor Craig Greenberg addressed the situation, stating that the conduct alleged in the sexual harassment lawsuits was “unacceptable and inexcusable.” He emphasized the importance of respect in the workplace and outlined plans to improve sexual harassment training and reporting procedures within the department.

This includes amending policies to provide officers with alternative avenues for reporting harassment complaints, with violators of the sexual harassment policy potentially facing termination.

Following Gwinn-Villaroel’s suspension on June 12, Paul Humphrey was named acting chief. He will continue in this interim role, marking the fourth interim chief since 2020. Mayor Greenberg did not specify whether he asked Gwinn-Villaroel to resign but indicated there would be no immediate search for a new full-time chief.

Gwinn-Villaroel, who joined the LMPD from the Atlanta Police Department in 2021, was appointed full-time chief in July 2023. Her resignation underscores the ongoing challenges and instability within the Louisville Metro Police Department.

As the department navigates these turbulent times, it’s clear that significant changes are needed to restore stability and trust within the community and among the ranks of its officers. Stay tuned for further updates on this developing story. We’ll keep you posted on all the latest news from Louisville and beyond.


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