Chief Jerry Dyer announces candidacy for Fresno Mayor

FRESNO, Calif. (KFSN) -- Fresno Police Chief Jerry Dyer announced his candidacy for mayor in a press conference Wednesday morning.

Chief Dyer was joined by some prominent figures in Fresno that included District Attorney Lisa Smittcamp and former Fresno Mayor Alan Autry, who both pledged their support for Dyer.

During his speech, Chief Dyer explained the issues he would like to address as mayor and how he would like to bring the city together.

"I won't pretend the problems in this city can be solved overnight... I make no greater commitment to each Fresno resident that they are safe," Dyer said. "The only way we are going to accomplish that is by coming together."

Touting his 40 years of experience, Dyer says he's uniquely qualified to make the tough decisions and wants to focus on job creation, homelessness, and public safety.

"We spend far to much time talking about Fresno's untapped potential," he said. "I think it's time we reach it and we'll only be able to do that by working together."

He went on to say, "I've been there at three in the morning with a family who has suffered the loss of a loved one, and I've been there on a weekend dealing with a crisis that occurs in our city. The same police chief I was, is the same mayor I will be for this city."

Former Mayor of Fresno, Alan Autry, said, "Jerry has some core beliefs that are unshakable. You need to bring people together, work together, stay together for the causes."

The press conference was to be held outside of Manchester Center; however, it was moved inside after protestors showed up.

They could be heard chanting, "No Mayor Dyer!"

"I don't consider him a leader," said community activist Gloria Hernandez. "He needs to resign effectively today because we don't want a politician being chief on duty."

Dyer's announcement comes after current Mayor Lee Brand decided to not run for re-election at the end of his term.

Councilmember Miguel Arias called for the immediate resignation of the police chief, while he seeks election, something fellow Councilmember Gary Bredefeld said he rejected.

"This is going to be the most polarizing and divisive race in the city's history," Arias said.

Chief Dyer is already set to retire with an official end date of October 15; however, he says he'll likely take a leave of absence in the near future to avoid any perceptions of a conflict of interest.

Mayoral Candidates, Andrew Janz and Luis Chavez have released statements saying they welcome Dyer's mayoral run and look forward to debating the issues with him.
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