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Retiring Henderson police chief eligible for $206K city buyout


Steve Marcus

Embattled Henderson Police Chief Jutta Chambers is shown during the Henderson State of the City address at Green Valley Ranch Resort on Thursday, Feb. 9, 2012. Chambers announced in a meeting with staff today that she will retire effective March 1, a city spokesman said.

Updated Thursday, Feb. 16, 2012 | 3:01 p.m.

Henderson Police chief steps down

KSNV coverage of Henderson Police Chief Jutta Chambers retiring amidst scandal, Feb. 16, 2012.

Man kicked in the head by Henderson Police officer

Video footage from a Nevada Highway Patrol dashboard camera of a Henderson Police officer kicking a man in the head during a traffic stop, Feb. 7, 2012. Warning: The footage contains material that may be offensive.

Henderson Police Chief Jutta Chambers may not have wanted to retire this soon, but a city buyout and state pension will ease her transition.

Chambers announced her retirement Thursday morning in a meeting with her staff.

Her retirement comes in the wake of criticism and calls for her resignation after a video was released last week showing a Henderson Police officer kicking a restrained driver in the head five times during an October 2010 traffic stop. The driver was suffering insulin shock.

Greene sued the state and Henderson. He and his wife agreed to settlements of about $250,000 from Henderson and $35,000 from the state.

Chambers, whose salary as chief is $185,326, is eligible to participate in the city’s latest employee buyout program, approved earlier this month by the Henderson City Council. Under terms of the program, Chambers’ buyout would be in the neighborhood of $206,700. Employees who accept the buyout will receive two weeks pay for each year of service with the city, plus three months of COBRA or retiree medical coverage.

A city spokesman said Chambers likely would participate in the buyout program.

Chambers also would be eligible for an estimated annual pension of $130,00 from the Nevada Public Employees Retirement System.

In a news conference Thursday morning, Mayor Andy Hafen said the Greene incident troubled the city council and that members asked City Manager Mark Calhoun, who announced his retirement earlier this week, to discuss the matter with Chambers.

Deputy Police Chief James White will take over as acting chief, and the new city manager will have the responsibility of hiring a permanent replacement, Hafen said.

Chambers joined the Henderson Police Department in 1983 and was the first female officer in the department’s history. She became chief of police in 2008.

Chambers has worked as a K-9 officer and an undercover narcotics agent for Henderson, and has worked or held supervising positions in every aspect of the department’s operations. She holds a bachelor’s degree in public administration in law enforcement from Nevada State College. She also is a graduate of the FBI National Academy.

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