Danville’s police chief may be heading to Roanoke

Chief Scott Booth is the finalist for the position in Roanoke

ROANOKE, Va. – The Roanoke Police Department is taking the next step in finding its new chief of police.

And their finalist is a familiar face from right down the road in Danville.

Danville Police Chief Scott Booth is in the running to be the Star City’s new chief.

It’s a position that Roanoke Mayor Sherman Lea said is no small task.

“This is a big job. July was a difficult month for gun violence,” Lea said.

But Booth is no stranger to gun violence.

Earlier this summer, he received a national award for his efforts to curb crime.

“His extensive experience with dealing with gun violence, gangs,” Lea said. “I was impressed with his background in terms of community engagement. And that’s a big aspect of what we do, and what we’re trying to do here.”

Community engagement is a large part of Booth’s approach to crime.

It’s something Danville City Manager Ken Larking said the city will continue to do, even if Booth moves to Roanoke.

“We’ve had dramatic drops in crime in our community, and the chief has put in place a system that we believe works,” Larking said.

Mayor Lea said if he’s hired, he hopes Booth’s model of community policing encourages more people to speak with police after a crime.

“I hope that’s the case,” Lea said. “Because we here have a tradition of not talking to police officers. In fact, people withdraw from talking.”

City Council has their first chance to speak with Booth during a community meet and greet.

The meet and greet with Chief Booth takes place Wednesday from 6-7:30 p.m. in Berglund Hall of the Berglund Center.

About the Author

Abbie Coleman officially joined the WSLS 10 News team in January 2023.

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