Spokane Valley swore in a new police chief Tuesday night, with Dave Ellis taking his oath of office alone in a city office over video due to COVID-19 restrictions.
Ellis, a former Spokane County undersheriff who supervised investigations, aviation programs and aquatic programs, replaces retiring police Chief Mark Werner.
Ellis, who worked as a Post Falls Police Department officer before starting his 18-year career at the sheriff’s office, begins his new assignment Wednesday.
“I’m very humbled and honored to step in this position,” he told the City Council. “The Spokane Valley Police Department is a great tradition, and I look forward to working with you.”
Most of the city of Spokane Valley’s services are contracted with private businesses or with Spokane County. The Spokane Valley Police Department is staffed with contracted Spokane County sheriff’s deputies. The county sheriff, currently Ozzie Knezovich, picks candidates from his department for the Spokane Valley police chief position. The city manager appoints one of the candidates to the office.
Spokane Valley Mayor Ben Wick welcomed the new chief and said he would shake Ellis’ hand if circumstances allowed.
In a phone call before the meeting, Wick said he looked forward to working with Ellis and that he appreciated his predecessor’s work at the helm of the Spokane Valley Police Department.
“We’re really excited to have (Ellis) as our new chief and to have him here in the future,” Wick said. “He brings a great skill set and experience for our community.”
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