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Blumhagen appointed as Chief of Police for LPS

 Ashli Barrett/Lacombe Globe

Lorne Blumhagen, the new Chief of Police for the Lacombe Police Service (LPS) places a MADD ribbon on a police cruiser last November. Blumhagen has been with LPS since 2014. (Ashli Barrett/Lacombe Globe)

Lorne Blumhagen, the new Chief of Police for the Lacombe Police Service (LPS) places a MADD ribbon on a police cruiser last November. Blumhagen has been with LPS since 2014. (Ashli Barrett/Lacombe Globe)

Lorne Blumhagen is climbing the police ranks.

The former inspector is now Chief of Police of the Lacombe Police Service (LPS).

Lacombe City Council ratified the recommendation, made by the Lacombe Police Commission, during their regular council meeting Monday evening, with the position becoming effective immediately thereafter.

Police Commission Chair Bob Huff said Blumhagen’s community-minded vision, track record, and leadership stood out during the vetting and interview process that took place over the past several months.

“We certainly appreciated the fact Lorne had some credibility,” Huff said. “He is a role model. He has got a lot of experience. He is involved in acting to promote the police service and is credible in the sense he wants to do the best job possible for the citizens of Lacombe.”

Blumhagen has been in the community since 2014, when he first joined LPS as inspector. During that time he oversaw all operational function of the service, from recruiting and selection, to professional and provincial standards compliance.

Just a few months ago in August of 2016, his role expanded when he was appointed acting police chief. He helped LPS transition from the old police station on 50 Ave. into the new facility on Wolf Creek Dr., and coordinated both the return of local dispatch and the change to the provincial First Responders Radio Communications System.

Mayor Steve Christie said he has served the community well, and expects that to continue in the future.

“Lorne is a great inspector,” he said. “He’s got a great background. He’s really well respected across the province, and we were honoured to ratify his appointment this evening.”

Blumhagen’s career began over 30 years ago with the RCMP in Camrose as a summer constable. In 1992, he became a full-time police officer with the Camrose Police Service.

After finishing his recruit training with Edmonton Police Service, he returned to Camrose and worked as a general patrol member. In 2005, he was promoted to Sergeant and managed a policing team and became the Non-Commissioned Officer in charge of the Major Crimes Unit (MCU).

In 2012, he was awarded the Governor General’s Exemplary Service Medal and in 2013 received the Queen Elizabeth II Jubilee Medal for initiatives in crime reduction and enforcement strategies.

His experience ranges from all forms of investigation, including homicide and sexual assault investigation to professional standards and he is certified as a Computer Voice Stress Analysis Examiner in forensic interviewing and truth verification, as well as a number of other policing areas.

Blumhagen has also held a number of executive positions, including as president with the Camrose Police Association for four terms. He has also been a director on the Alberta Federation of Police Association which lobbied the government for reform and change to the Federal Parole Act, amongst other statutes.

“I am honoured to receive the appointment as Chief of Police from the Lacombe Police Commission and the City of Lacombe,” said Blumhagen in a release issued Monday night. “I look forward to providing leadership to the dedicated members and staff of the LPS to ensure we are providing quality policing services to the citizens of Lacombe and all community partners.

“As we move forward we will be committed to enhancing our level of service through effective and efficient delivery models focused on increased public safety and addressing community needs.”

Discussions on filling the inspector position are expected to commence in upcoming weeks.

Blumhagen replaces former Police Chief Steve Murray, who announced his retirement in October after being placed on administrative leave in the summer.

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