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WEST MEMPHIS, Ark. — West Memphis Chief of Police Eddie West will retire effective July 31, the Mayor Marco McClendon said Monday.

West has served on the West Memphis Police Department for almost 40 years, beginning as a patrolman. He was assistant chief in 2018 when he was appointed as chief, McClendon said, and has also served on the school board.

West will remain with the department for now to assure a smooth transition to his successor, the city said.

“I have been honored to serve the city that I love,” West said in a statement. “I’m proud of the men and women of the West Memphis Police Department and the progress that we have made together.My goal has always been to make West Memphis a safer city, and together with the officers, support staff, Mayor McClendon and the City Council, we have done that.”