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Providence Police Chief Hugh Clements: 13 To Watch in RI in 2013

Tuesday, January 01, 2013


When Hugh Clements was officially named Chief of Police in early 2012, members of the Providence Police Department breathed a collective sigh of relief.

Clements replaced Chief Dean Esserman, who, while earning praise for helping reduce crime to its lowest point in 30 years, had a disastrous relationship with rank-and-file members that included berating officers in public and resulted in a no confidence vote from the union.

Clements, by all accounts, was (and still is) a cop’s cop. He joined the department in 1985, rising from the rank of patrolman and spending about half his career in the patrol bureau and the other half in the investigative division. The majority of his years in the detective bureau were spent investigating major crimes and he also served in the investigative division’s narcotics unit.

As the major in charge of the uniform division – a position he held from 2009 until he was named deputy chief in April 2011 – Clements oversaw the largest division in the apartment, supervising nine district commanders and working closely with the Providence City Council and partners in the community to support and expand the department’s community policing strategy.

When he was finally appointed to the top job, he was praised by the union and political leaders. And in his first year on the job, he’s worked to reduce crime in most categories (with the notable exception of murders) despite having to deal with a department and a city short on cash.

2013 has the chance to be a banner year for Clements. He’ll bring in 18 new officers thanks to federal funds that had previously gone untouched and with so much attention being paid to firearms, don’t be surprised if the city becomes a national leader for its efforts to curb shootings.

For a guy with arguably the most difficult job in the city, Clements is proving to be a star.


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good luck chief

Comment #1 by frank bentley on 2013 01 01

I like him, hes doing a good job under the circumstances,hopefully more officers will be a help. We need to stiffen the penalties for people who are in possession of illegal firearms , to many shootings and robberies in Providence.

Comment #2 by anthony sionni on 2013 01 01

what a contrast with esserman.

clements is very refreshing. its not about feeding is ego. its a bout doing a good job.

Comment #3 by jon paycheck on 2013 01 01

I worked with Chief Clements while on temporary(4 years)assignment with PPD.He is a top quality person and police officer and has done most of the major assignments in the Department except maybe Traffic.A total change from that bum Esserman.

Comment #4 by Joseph Bernstein on 2013 01 01

I might add that we worked together during the period 1990-94 and he hasn't changed-still the same matter of fact non egotistical professional.

Comment #5 by Joseph Bernstein on 2013 01 02

oh yeah, I didnt like that Esserman, what a contract cicilline gave him and a waste of money! He didn't even carry a gun lol

Comment #6 by anthony sionni on 2013 01 02

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