CPD Chief Keith Washburn Set To Retire Friday

After 25 years of service in the Chillicothe Police Department, Chief Keith Washburn retires May 22nd, 2020.

Washburn joined the CPD in May of 1995. He became interim Chief in 2014 and sworn in to the position the following spring.

The Chief sat down with Litter Media (see the interview below) to discuss his time as an officer and to look back at his time in office, from the department drawing national attention investigating Chillicothe’s missing women, drug addiction and to the creation of the K-9 Unit. 

In 2018, Washburn earned his law degree and beginning May 26th, he’ll be starting a new position, Assistant Prosecuting Attorney for Jackson County.

Washburn says he’s witnessed many changes over during his career. “When I first joined in ’95, the drug of choice was crack cocaine. With crack cocaine, you had some higher levels of violent crime, but the key to a road officer that I look at, if I stopped a guy and I’m looking for crack and I missed it, I’m going to get him later. With this heroine and fentanyl, if I stop a guy and I miss that, there’s a good possibility that he could die from the drugs that are in his pocket. That’s one of the big differences.” 

Another was in the 90s, there were a lot of bar fights, almost like in the movies, but he said those have fortunately run their course over the years.

He also noted the the criminal justice sentence reform across the United States is still evolving.

“In 1995 for example, a second offense theft was a felony and the person went to prison. Now there’s no second offense theft and the threshold wen from $500 to $1,000 to make it a felony. What we’re not seeing is rehabilitation. It’s more punishment and retribution when it comes to the criminal justice system. If you have a person whose stealing, there’s an underlying reason he’s out there committing that theft crime. If you can fix that problem, then you’re gonna stop a theft. I think that’s where we’re lacking in the criminal justice system is looking at that underlying problem and treating that whether it’s mental health, addiction, whatever that reason is. I think we’re lacking that.”

Washburn said Captain Larry Bamfield will be acting-Chief until a successor is named.

2020 Ohio State Fair Cancelled

Presented by Hometown-Motors, Inc.

COLUMBUS – The Ohio Expositions Commission announced that it will cancel the 2020 Ohio State Fair, originally scheduled for July 29 – August 9 in Columbus.

Members of the Commission expressed concern for public health, as well as the financial feasibility of hosting a fair that would adhere to social distancing protocols and its impact on the long-term viability of the Ohio State Fair. 

“After careful thought and deliberation, we have decided to cancel the Ohio State Fair. Knowing how easily the virus spreads in large groups, we believe it is the safest path forward for the health and safety of all Ohioans.” said Andy Doehrel, chair of the Ohio Expositions Commission. “The financial ramifications of hosting a reduced-capacity Fair would be too great, and we need to protect the Ohio State Fair for future generations.”

“Our first priority is the safety of the hundreds of thousands of people involved in the Ohio State Fair each year. While this is a difficult decision, we feel it is necessary to protect the fairgoers, exhibitors, volunteers, vendors, partners, performers, concessionaires, youth leaders, employees and sponsors,” said Virgil Strickler, general manager of the Ohio Expo Center & State Fair. “I look forward to seeing my fellow Ohioans at the 2021 Ohio State Fair, when it is safer for us to enjoy our favorite traditions together.” 

Last year, 934,925 people attended the Ohio State Fair during its 12-day run. These attendees came from each of Ohio’s 88 counties, all 50 states, the District of Columbia, as well as Canada and Mexico. 

The Ohio Expositions Commission is focused on developing a strategy to responsibly reopen its year-round facilities when appropriate, and to welcome guests back for the 2021 Ohio State Fair, scheduled for July 28 through August 8 of next year.