Report: Detroit Police Chief James Craig to Retire, May Challenge Gretchen Whitmer

Detroit Police Chief James Craig, who was recently cleared to return to work after fighting his own COVID-19 diagnosis, addresses the media during Detroit Mayor Mike Duggan's daily press briefing on the coronavirus, Thursday, April 16, 2020, in Detroit. (AP Photo/Carlos Osorio)
AP Photo/Carlos Osorio

Detroit Police Chief James Craig will reportedly announce his retirement Monday and may declare he is running for Michigan governor.

Multiple outlets are reporting Craig, who was appointed police chief in 2013, would possibly run as a Republican against incumbent Gov. Gretchen Whitmer (D), WDIV reported.

He has served in police departments in Cincinnati, Portland, Maine, and Los Angeles.

The Detroit mayor’s office told WDIV, “the chief has not indicated to the mayor that he has made any decisions about his future.”

According to Fox 2, Craig clashed with U.S. Rep. Rashida Tlaib (D) in April over her numerous calls to defund and abolish the police.

Craig said he would “love to see her resign and he would throw her a goodbye party.” Tlaib told her supporters she is not going anywhere.

The chief installed a controversial surveillance program called Project Green Light during his tenure. The camera system, which is monitored real-time by Detroit police, “is used in conjunction with facial recognition software which unfairly targets black men and women,” critics have alleged.

Fox 2 reported Craig would be the first “prominent” name to announce his candidacy. Austin Chenge of Grand Rapids, Ryan Kelley of Allendale, Bob Scott of Howell, and Garrett Soldano of Kalamazoo have all announced campaigns. Real America’s Voice host Tudor Dixon is a rumored potential candidate.

“He brought us a mighty long way,” Detroit activist Malik Shabazz told the Detroit News of Craig.

“He brought energy, he brought new life, and he reached out to the community. He told us he wanted to be partners with the community, and wanted us to work together. He said, ‘We’re not always going to agree on things, but we have to work together,'” he said.

Shabazz said because of Craig, “we’re better, we’re safer overall and moving in the right direction.”

Kyle Olson is a reporter for Breitbart News. He is also host of “The Kyle Olson Show,” syndicated on Michigan radio stations on Saturdays–download full podcast episodes. Follow him on Parler.

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