City to Honor Outgoing Chief during Sept. 18 City Council Meeting
Wheaton City Manager Mike Dzugan announced today that Police Chief Bill Murphy will retire on Sept. 25, 2023, concluding his 33-year career with the Wheaton Police Department.
Chief Murphy began serving the community as a patrol officer with the Wheaton Police Department in 1990. He ascended to become a field training officer, then detective, officer-in-charge, sergeant, lieutenant and deputy chief before becoming Wheaton’s 12th police chief in 2018.
"It has been an honor and a privilege to serve as a police officer in Wheaton and as chief for the past 5 years,” Chief Murphy said. “The work we do is not easy, but it is incredibly rewarding. The comradery is special and synergistic when you have good people working toward the common goal of community safety.
“Most everyone who lives or works in Wheaton knows how special the community is. I am so thankful that my path brought me to Wheaton. There are too many people to thank for their support, assistance, and friendship so I will say thank you to everyone. Wheaton gave me purpose and provided me with a meaningful career. I will rest easy knowing the police department has excellent people of character who will continue to serve the community honorably."
Under his leadership, Chief Murphy guided the department through significant changes and unprecedented times. The department leveraged technology to increase transparency and improve operations, including implementing body worn cameras for all sworn officers and installing Automated License Plate Readers to reduce crime and locate missing individuals. Programs like Administrative Adjudication, which offers hearings for certain municipal violations at City Hall rather than using the county judicial system, provided more convenient services for the community, and the department made many services available online.
Chief Murphy led the department through the COVID-19 pandemic and civil unrest in 2020. He worked to build trust between the community and the Wheaton Police Department through transparent communication about the department’s operations and by creating numerous community engagement programs. Chief Murphy was also integral in the process to add two City social workers, who work cooperatively with law enforcement and emergency medical services to meet the community’s needs.
“Chief Murphy led our community’s police department during some extraordinarily challenging times, and he did so with professionalism, humility and a drive for innovation,” said City Manager Dzugan. “I have been honored to work with Chief Murphy for more than 30 years, and this community has benefitted greatly in having an outstanding leader with a such long history of service in Wheaton.”
During the Sept. 18, 2023 City Council meeting, the City will honor Chief Murphy for his years of service. The community is welcome to attend the meeting, which will begin at 7 p.m. in the Council Chambers of City Hall, 303 W. Wesley St.