Yuma police chief resigns
Jon Lynch abruptly resigned late last week as chief of police for Yuma.
The announcement was made on Facebook. Lynch told the Pioneer he was not going to comment.
The Yuma City Council held a brief special meeting late last Friday afternoon to approve a temporary employment agreement with City Manager Scott Moore.
Moore stressed before the council took action that it was just to provide administrative support to the YPD, and would not entail any law enforcement duties.
“I want to make sure we are all clear on that,” he said.
The council voted 6-0 in favor of the agreement. Mayor Ron Swehla, and council members Bethleen McCall, Ryan Saffer, Luke Goeglein and Bryson Chrismer were in attendance, while Steve Hoch participated via telephone. Councilman Dan Baucke was absent.
Moore said afterward he would help with such things as budgeting, scheduling and other administrative duties, adding that the council asked him to fill the role. It will only be until a temporary or permanent chief of police is appointed.
Swehla said the process for searching for Swehla’s replacement had begun already.
Lynch, a Yuma native and 1995 graduate of Yuma High School, had been with the YPD since 2004. He eventually was promoted to sergeant, and led the department at times when former chief Michael Fields was gone on military duties. Lynch was the interim chief for several months after Fields was let go in the fall of 2013. He was not one of the three finalists in the council’s search for Fields’ replacement, with the job going to Ralph Maher, a veteran of the Fountain Police Department.
However, Maher was let go by the city council after just 10 months on the job. Lynch was appointed “temporary” chief at that time. The council never did conduct a search for a new chief, instead promoting Lynch to permanent chief of police in January 2015.
Overall, Lynch has been in law enforcement since 1999, first working for former Yuma County Sheriff Bruce Zulauf. He continued working for the Yuma County Sheriff’s Office until joining the YPD 15 years ago.