Desert Hot Springs Police Department gets shaken up

"They won't notice a difference."

DESERT HOT SPRINGS, Calif. - "They won't notice a difference," Desert Hot Springs Interim Police Chief Dan Bressler said. 

A bold statement, as Desert Hot Springs moves further from stability. 

"If they call, it might take me a while to return their calls, those things might take time as we get caught up staff-wise, but other  than that we'll be fine here," Bressler said. 

Police Chief Kate Singer and Commander Ken Peary retired Friday night effective immediately. We contacted both Singer and Peary - neither got back to us. 

"We've had two commander positions that have been filled, by myself and Commander Perry. Commander Peary retired. I am now the acting Chief, so these two positions will remain vacant until the city manager makes a decision on that," Bressler said. 

This comes less than a month after city leaders declared a fiscal emergency and fight to avoid bankruptcy. Bressler said the cuts come from the top, administration, so you won't feel them. 

"As far as anyone on the streets and anyone out there, if you need help we will be there. Our response times are low and they will stay low," Bressler. 

"As we go into the budget discussions right now, we know that we are operating under limited resources so we know there will be additional changes in the city of Desert Hot Springs," Desert Hot Springs mayor Adam Sanchez. 

Sanchez said the retirements of two of the police departments highest ranked and highest paid members will save the city money.

We asked Mayor Sanchez, "Do you think Commander Peary and Chief Singer left so they could get bigger pensions?"

"No, I think because of the limited resources we have no they are at retirement age this is a good time for them to retire and move onto different careers in law enforcement," Sanchez said. 

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