Derek Bos of Colorado smiles for a photo Sept. 28 outside of City Hall during a visit to Juneau as a finalist for chief of the Juneau Police Department. He was named the new chief on Tuesday and is scheduled to start Feb. 1. (Clarise Larson / Juneau Empire File)

Derek Bos of Colorado smiles for a photo Sept. 28 outside of City Hall during a visit to Juneau as a finalist for chief of the Juneau Police Department. He was named the new chief on Tuesday and is scheduled to start Feb. 1. (Clarise Larson / Juneau Empire File)

Juneau reaches to Colorado for new police chief

Derek Bos replaces Chief Ed Mercer, who retired July 31

Derek Bos is the new chief of the Juneau Police Department, effective Feb. 1.

“I am very grateful for the opportunity and excited to become a part of JPD,” Bos said in a statement released Tuesday by the City and Borough of Juneau. “My family and I consider it a rich blessing to join the Juneau community, and we look forward to building new friendships and embarking on a new journey of leadership with JPD.”

[Chief finalist says building trust in schools and faith-based communities a priority]

Bos is chief of police at the Eagle Police Department in Eagle, Colorado, which he began in December 2022. Before that he served as chief of the Brush Police Department in Brush, Colorado.

The top job has been vacant since Chief Ed Mercer retired at the end of July. Mercer had been in the role since 2017 and with JPD since 2000. David Campbell, a lifelong Alaskan at JPD since 1995, was deputy chief and served as acting chief in an interim capacity until he retired Sept. 29. Lt. Jeremy Weske has been acting chief since.

Bos’ law enforcement career began in 2006 at the Chaffee County Sheriff’s Office in Chaffee, Colorado. He holds a Bachelor of Arts degree in political studies with an emphasis on criminal justice from Dordt College.

“Chief Bos is a proven leader with the executive law enforcement skills that will serve JPD and the community well,” City Manager Katie Koester said in the statement. “I look forward to welcoming Derek and his family to Juneau.”

“It is an honor to be entrusted with the safety and well-being of the citizens of Juneau and a privilege to take on the responsibility of leading the Juneau Police Department,” said Bos.

Bos comes with some controversy in regards to the arrest and prosecution of two school district administrators when he was with the Broom department. The two men were each charged with four felonies. Those charges were dropped after a judge reviewed the case, which involved the sexting images being passed between students, according to reporting by CBS News in Colorado

The appointment of Bos follows an open process that included participation from the City and Borough of Juneau Assembly, JPD, and the public.

There were three finalists. After one dropped out for personal reasons the remaining candidates were Bos and Krag Campbell, a longtime member of the JPD force.

Campbell is head of special operations for JPD, which includes overseeing criminal investigation and drug enforcement units, as well as civilian investigators. Those responsibilities are in addition to his role as public information officer. He joined the department in 2002 after serving five years in the army as a military police officer.

Campbell could not be reached for comment.

JPD has 55 sworn positions, of which 13 were vacant as of Oct. 9. Those vacancies include the police chief and deputy chief, said JPD spokesperson Erann Kalwara.

• Contact Meredith Jordan at meredith.jordan@juneauempire.com or (907) 615-3190.

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