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Springfield Police chief abruptly retires

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By Kelly McKinney

Springfield’s chief of police has retired after an abrupt announcement last week.

According to a news release from mayor Debbie Wakefield, chief Jim Smith notified her of his retirement in a letter dated Aug. 27.

The chief’s last day was Aug. 28.

The release did not state a reason for the chief’s retirement.

Wakefield said she plans to appoint an interim chief “within a week or so,” and the city will then advertise for a full-time chief.

“(Smith) will be missed by this community, his constituents and staff,” Wakefield said.

Smith joined the Springfield Police Department in 2007 and was appointed chief in 2011.

Smith will be honored for his service in September.

Efforts to reach Smith for comment were unsuccessful.