Chief of Police

Murtha, Chris

A Message from the Chief - May 1, 2021

In December 2019, during my interview for the position as Chief of Police for Wheat Ridge, I was asked a very specific question. “What are you going to do about I-70 and Kipling?”  As I researched the topic further, I discovered a long history of concern and focus on this part of town, and found that many community members have a very negative perception of the area. Changing community perception will require real intervention and results that are demonstrated by all departments of our municipal government. Our reputation as a city should not be based solely on the conditions at I-70 and Kipling but sometimes it is.

Addressing the issues occurring in that area is also not the sole responsibility of the police department. In Wheat Ridge, we are working across all departments to implement policy change and we are collaborating with our regional partners to establish permanent improvements. Read More For more information about Homelessness

Message from the Chief June 1, 2020

Annual Reports

2020 Annual Report

2019 Annual Report

Annual Report Archive

The National Search for the next Chief of Police 

The City engaged Public Sector Search and Consulting (PSSC) to lead the national search process for the City’s next Chief of Police. PSSC held community and employee focus group meetings to gain a better understanding of the qualities Wheat Ridge desires in its next Chief. In addition an online and printed survey was distributed to staff and community members. Two final candidates were selected and participated in the Police Chief Candidate Community Forum to meet community members and answer questions.

Welcome Chris Murtha New Chief of Wheat Ridge Police

The City of Wheat Ridge City Manager Patrick Goff has selected Chris Murtha as the next Chief of the Wheat Ridge Police Department. Murtha has accepted a conditional offer pending final background screenings.  

“I’d like to thank the community, our staff, and public safety partners for providing their input as we conducted a national search for the next Chief of Police. The selection process was a difficult one due to the level of qualified candidates who applied for the position,” stated Patrick Goff, city manager of Wheat Ridge. “I am very pleased to announce the selection of Chris Murtha as our next Chief of the Wheat Ridge Police Department. Chris is an exceptional leader and has a proven track record of reducing crime through an innovative and collaborative approach to community policing. He and his wife are very excited to return to the Denver area, and we are looking forward to welcoming him officially on February 10, 2020,” continued Goff.

Chris Murtha currently holds the position of Deputy Chief for the Patrol Bureau of Prince George’s County Police Department in Maryland. A former Denver resident, Murtha has 23 years of experience in law enforcement. Leading a department of 1,100 men and women, both sworn and civilian, Murtha was instrumental in adopting a new records management system, automated speed enforcement, and license plate readers. “I have worked hard to forge a positive image for my agency and to demonstrate a balanced approach to leadership. I have focused on creating positive community relationships to move our agency forward in a progressive direction,” stated Murtha.

Murtha received his bachelor’s degree in Political Science from the University of New Hampshire and a certificate from the Police Executive Research Forum’s Senior Management Institute for Police.

As Deputy Chief for the Prince George’s Police Department, Murtha oversees calls for service by patrol to the University of Maryland-College Park Campus, FedEx Field, National Harbor Convention Center, Joint Base Andrews-Naval Air Facility Washington (home of Air Force One), and other venues.

Wheat Ridge Chief of Police Community Engagement Report

Wheat Ridge Police Department Community Forum Series

September 2017 Forum on Crime

November 2017 Forum on Homelessness