After a little more than a year in his role and at least a month of paid administrative leave, UVA Police Chief Tommye Sutton has resigned. Tim Longo, former chief of police for the City of Charlottesville, will step in as a temporary replacement for one year during a formal search process for a permanent hire.
The University has declined to elaborate on what led to Sutton’s suspension or resignation beyond describing the course of events as a “personnel matter.” According to The Daily Progress, University officials have also not provided Sutton’s letter of resignation to the press.
Longo, who previously served as CPD police chief for a span of fifteen years from 2001 to 2016, will begin in his new position effective immediately.
“We are very excited to have Tim step into this important role,” UVA Executive Vice President and Chief Operating Officer Jennifer “J.J.” Wagner Davis told CBS19. “Tim is a part of the Charlottesville community and the UVA family and his deep connections, vast experience and the respect everyone has for him will put the University Police Department in very capable hands as we look to the future.”
Longo expressed gratitude for the opportunity to lead a department with whom he worked closely during his time as the head of CPD.
“I am looking forward to working with the great team in place at the university and the committed, hard-working officers here at UPD, many of whom I’ve known for years,” Longo said in a statement.
Longo’s connection to the University extends beyond his 35-year-long career in law enforcement. In 2016, he joined the faculty of UVA’s School of Continuing and Professional Studies to help launch a master’s degree in public safety administration and he currently serves as program director and faculty for the Master of Public Safety.
Prior to his time in Charlottesville, Longo worked for the Baltimore Police Department beginning in 1981, eventually becoming the bureau chief of technical services. In the midst of his police work, Longo continued his education, earning his bachelor’s degree in sociology and anthropology from Towson University and a law degree from the University of Baltimore. He pursued a career in consulting in Washington, D.C. before joining CPD.
Appearing with a University spokesperson on Oct. 1, Longo explained his reasons for accepting the new responsibility.
“I saw this as a really great opportunity,” he said. “I know these people; I know them professionally and some of them I know personally, and those that I don’t know, I look forward to meeting.