Charleroi area gets new police chief

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CHARLEROI – A 16-year veteran police officer in Charleroi was named chief of his regional police department.


The Charleroi Regional police board Wednesday promoted Eric Porter from the rank of detective lieutenant to police chief to oversee a department of seven full-time officers.


Porter said he was serving as acting chief of the department since former chief Michael Matyas retired May 23 after he worked there for nearly three decades.


“We’re just going to keep cracking down on the drug problem,” Porter said Thursday, outlining his primary goal as chief.


He said the department has made 188 arrests this year.


He was hired in Charleroi in 1998 when officers there were members of a borough police department.


In 2012, Charleroi joined with North Charleroi, Speers and Twilight to form a regional force.


Speers Mayor Bill Lee, who chairs the department’s personnel committee, said the majority of the police board believes Porter does outstanding work that has included cooperation with the Secret Service, FBI and U.S. Department of Homeland Security.


Lee said Porter also has forged bonds with police in the surrounding municipalities.


“He just demonstrates the person and character who would make an outstanding chief,” Lee said.


“We feel that we have made an excellent choice. We think he will prove we made an excellent choice.”


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