Esserman out as Providence police chief

PROVIDENCE, RI – After eight years as Providence police chief, Dean Esserman has resigned.

Esserman became a polarizing figure after becoming chief in 2003. Supporters say he reformed a scandal-plagued department. Rank and file officers called Esserman arrogant and voted no confidence in him in 2009.

Esserman says he resigned because of controversy over a recent graduation party at his home. The chief says he broke it up after witnessing some underage drinking.

"It has become a distraction, it has become a distraction for the department," says Esserman. "I take responsibility for what happened in my home. And this privilege, of leading this department, now has to go to another."

Esserman and Public Safety Commission Steven Pare say the resignation is unrelated to city efforts to cut 6 million dollars in police expenses. Pare says the city will launch a search for Esserman's successor.

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