John Escalante is leaving the Chicago Police Department to become Northeastern Illinois University's police chief.
Escalante, the CPD's first deputy superintendent who briefly served as interim police chief amid the initial fallout over the Laquan McDonald shooting, will start at NEIU on September 7. Escalante has been with the CPD for 30 years and will leave the department after the Labor Day weekend.
"As Police Superintendent and a resident of Chicago, I have bittersweet emotions on John's decision to accept this incredible opportunity as our Police Department will lose a very dedicated and intelligent crime fighter who cares deeply about the people and safety of our city," CPD Police Supt. Eddie Johnson said Tuesday.
"However, as a friend and father of college-aged children, I would be grateful knowing that John Escalante is the man safeguarding their college experience and future," Johnson continued. "The students and faculty of Northeastern Illinois University couldn't have chosen a better candidate for the position of Chief of Police and on behalf of the entire Chicago Police Department, I wish him the very best and thank him for his invaluable contributions to the City."
Escalante took over as the city's interim police chief after Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel fired Garry McCarthy in December. McCarthy's firing came one week after police dashcam video of the McDonald shooting was publicly released and the officer involved in the shooting, Jason Van Dyke, was charged with first-degree murder.
Emanuel later tapped Johnson to become the CPD superintendent.