Here is another in our series of articles about what is going on around Rochester.
Greece Police Chief Todd Baxter announced that he will be leaving the department. Baxter added that he will finish out the month in Greece, and take up his new position — as executive director of the Veterans Outreach Center — on April 2.
Baxter’s announcement is bittersweet. The retiring chief made incredible contributions to the Greece police department, and many agree that he will be sorely missed. According to 13 Wham, Baxter revolutionized several areas, such as internal affairs and evidence collection, and added several new — and invaluable — members to the force. Baxter overwhelmingly won over local trust shortly after his appointment as chief of police. “Just a month into the job, he was faced with solving a triple homicide at the Holyoke Apartments. He reassured residents there and people in the town they were safe and that it wasn’t a random crime. It was later tied to Jamaican drug activity,” 13 Wham reminisces.
Bill Reilich, Greece Town Supervisor, extended his support to Baxter in an official statement: “Over one-third of the officers are new to the Greece Police Department ranks trained and mentored by Chief Baxter. I wish Chief Baxter great success as he leaves the ranks of law enforcement and explores his passion for our veterans.”
Although the Greece police department will miss Baxter, the Veterans Outreach Center is welcoming him with open arms. Many look forward to his appointment, hoping that Baxter will offer some stability and permanency to an organization accustomed to “cycling through two permanent executive directors and one interim in fewer than four years,” The Democrat & Chronicle reports. Moreover, Baxter brings hands-on experience to the position. Prior to working as Greece’s police chief, Baxter served as a military police officer in South Korea and Fort Leavenworth, Kansas.
The Rochester-based Veterans Outreach Center offers assistance to troubled veterans. Veterans who are arrested or end up in the criminal justice system, for example, find it increasingly difficult to get aid. (The VA will, for one, reduce any Social Security Disability benefits.) The Veterans Outreach Center aims to help especially troubled veterans, including veterans with a criminal history, and/or those suffering from PTSD or sexual trauma.