MEDINA, OH (WOIO) - Medina Police Chief Patrick Berarducci is set to retire later this week, Medina Mayor Dennis Hanwell confirmed this morning.
Chief Berarducci sent an email to police staff yesterday afternoon, stating his last day will be June 21, 2017.
Mayor Hanwell said that Lt. Dave Birckbichler has been serving as the acting chief all year while Chief Berarducci was out. The mayor added that he will continue to serve as acting chief until a new testing process for a chief is approved, completed, and a new chief is selected. Hanwell has also been assisting Lt. Birckbichler along with the city's safety director and former police chief.
"I am so thankful for my time as Medina Police Chief. My wife and I have lived in Medina for more than 30 years. We raised our family here. It was a dream come true to serve as Medina's Chief of Police. It is certainly difficult to walk away, but this isn't necessarily goodbye and I'm excited to begin the next chapter of my life," Berarducci said in a statement to Cleveland 19.
The Medina Gazette reported back in January of this year that Chief Berarducci was on medical leave since Thanksgiving of 2016.
According to Chief Berarducci's biography on the police department's website, he has been chief since August of 2009. Prior to that, he served as police chief in Boardman, and had a 29-year career with the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives. He started his career with the Youngstown Police Department back in 1974.
While serving as chief, Medina officers were among the first to being carrying defibrillators, combat treatment for gunshot wounds, and Narcan for opiate overdoses. They were also one of the first departments to use social media. Chief Berarducci, in 2010, testified before the US Senate on the use of technology in law enforcement. He has earned numerous awards, including the US Treasury Department's "Medal of Valor."
"I am so thankful for the opportunity I've been given to be Medina Police Chief, and the support I have received from the men and women of the Medina Police Department and this community. Medina is a great place, which I'm happy to call home," Berarducci said in the statement.